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C.D. Warner, et al., comp. The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.


By Bryan Waller Procter (Barry Cornwall) (1787–1874)

WE are born; we laugh; we weep;

We love; we droop; we die!

Ah! wherefore do we laugh or weep?

Why do we live or die?

Who knows that secret deep?

Alas, not I!

Why doth the violet spring

Unseen by human eye?

Why do the radiant seasons bring

Sweet thoughts that quickly fly?

Why do our fond hearts cling

To things that die?

We toil—through pain and wrong;

We fight—and fly;

We love; we lose; and then, ere long,

Stone-dead we lie.

O life! is all thy song

“Endure and—die”?