Jane's Poetry Book

The Fragility of Beauty

I must tune my heart-broken string
    For the fair has commanded the strain
But yet such a them will I sing
    That I think she'll not ask me again.

For I'll tell her - Youth's xx is blowing
    And that beauty the flower must fade
(And sure if a lady can frown,
    She'll frown at the words I have said)

The smiles of the rose-bud how fleet!
    They come and as quickly they fly:
The voilet how modest and sweet!
    Yet the Spring sees it open & die.

How snow-white the lily appears!
    Yet the life of a lily's a day;
And the snow that it equals, in tears,
    To-morrow must vanish away.

Ah, Beauty! of all things on earth
    How many thy charms most desire!
Yet beauty and youth has its birth,
    And Beauty and Youth must expire.

Oh, fair ones! so sad is this tale
    That my song in my sorrow I steep
And where I intended to rail,
    I must lay down any harp,& and xx

But virtue indignantly seized
    The harp as it fell from my hand;
Serene was her look, though displeased,
    As she uttered her awful command

Thy tears and thy xx employ
    For the thoughtless, the giddy, & vain
But those whomy xx enjoy
    Thy tears and thy pity disclaim.

For Beauty alone n'er bestow'd
    Such a charm as Religion has lent;
And the cheek of a belle never glow'd
    With a smile like the smile of content.

xx xx, & the pestilence xx
    No hue no complexion can brave;
For Beauty must yield to old age,
    But I will not yield to the grave.
                Susan Catharine [Livingston]
Feby 7th 1827

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