Maurice Thompson


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Thou art the last rose of the year,
By gusty breezes rudely fanned:
The dying Summer holds thee fast
In the hot hollow of her hand.

Thy face pales, as if looking back
Into the splendor of thy past
Had thrilled thee strangely, knowing that
This one long look must be the last.

Thine essence, that was heavenly sweet,
Has flown upon the tricksy air:
Fate's hand is on thee; drop thy leaves,
And go among the things that were.

Be must and mould, be trampled dust,
Be nothing that is fair to see:
One day, at least, of glorious life
Was thine of all eternity.

Be this a comfort: crown and lyre
And regal purple last not long;
Kings fall like leaves, but thy perfume
Strays through the years like royal song.

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Maurice Thompson