Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908). A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895. 1895.

Walter Savage Landor 1775–1864



THE MOTHER of the Muses, we are taught,

Is Memory: she has left me; they remain,

And shake my shoulder, urging me to sing

About the summer days, my loves of old.

Alas! alas! is all I can reply.

Memory has left with me that name alone,

Harmonious name, which other bards may sing,

But her bright image in my darkest hour

Comes back, in vain comes back, call’d or uncall’d.

Forgotten are the names of visitors

Ready to press my hand but yesterday;

Forgotten are the names of earlier friends

Whose genial converse and glad countenance

Are fresh as ever to mine ear and eye;

To these, when I have written and besought

Remembrance of me, the word Dear alone

Hangs on the upper verge, and waits in vain.

A blessing wert thou, O oblivion,

If thy stream carried only weeds away,

But vernal and autumnal flowers alike

It hurries down to wither on the strand.