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The Parting

What souls about to leave their bodies bear,
Forced to forsake their long-lov'd mansions there;
The dying anguish, the convulsive pain,
And all the racking tortures they sustain;
And most of all, the doubt, the dreadful fear
When thrust out thence, to go they know not where;
My soul such pangs, such sad distractions knew,
Forced by despairing love to part with you.
Fix'd on that face where I could ever dwell,
Charm'd into silence by some magic spell,
I sigh'd and shook, and could not say farewell.
Down my sad cheeks did tears in torrents roll,
And death's cold damp sat heavy on my soul.
My trembling eyes swain in a native flood,
As fast as they wept tears my heart wept blood.
All signs of desp'rate grief possess'd the face,
My sinking feet seem root'd to their place,
And scarce could bear me to the last embrace.
Gods! where was then my soul? that parting kiss
Was both the last, and dearest taste of bliss.
Ah ! since that fatal time, I could not boast
Of love, or life, or soul; all, all is lost.
When the last moment that I had to stay,
Call'd me, like one condemn'd to death, away,
With staggering steps I did my path pursue,
Yet oft I turn'd to take another view,
Oft gaz'd and sigh'd, and murmur'd out adieu.

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