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Canto XC

He tasted love with half his mind,    Nor ever drank the inviolate spring    Where nighest heaven, who first could fling This bitter seed among mankind;

That could the dead, whose dying eyes    Were closed with wail, resume their life,    They would but find in child and wife An iron welcome when they rise:

'Twas well, indeed, when warm with wine,    To pledge them with a kindly tear,    To talk them o'er, to wish them here, To count their memories half divine;

But if they came who past away,    Behold their brides in other hands;    The hard heir strides about their lands, And will not yield them for a day.

Yea, tho' their sons were none of these,    Not less the yet-loved sire would make    Confusion worse than death, and shake The pillars of domestic peace.

Ah dear, but come thou back to me:    Whatever change the years have wrought,    I find not yet one lonely thought That cries against my wish for thee.

-Alfred Lord Tennyson, In Memoriam A. H. H., Canto XC

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