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Poem by Robert Browning
AN OLD STORY. I. It was roses, roses, all the way, With myrtle mixed in my path like mad: The house-roofs seemed to heave and sway, The church-spires flamed, such flags they had, A year ago on this very day. II. The air broke into a mist with bells, The old walls rocked with the crowd and cries. Had I said, ``Good folk, mere noise repels--- But give me your sun from yonder skies!'' They had answered, ``And afterward, what else?'' III. Alack, it was I who leaped at the sun To give it my loving friends to keep! Nought man could do, have I left undone: And you see my harvest, what I reap This very day, now a year is run. IV. There's nobody on the house-tops now--- Just a palsied few at the windows set; For the best of the sight is, all allow, At the Shambles' Gate---or, better yet, By the very scaffold's foot, I trow. V. I go in the rain, and, more than needs, A rope cuts both my wrists behind; And I think, by the feel, my forehead bleeds, For they fling, whoever has a mind, Stones at me for my year's misdeeds. VI. Thus I entered, and thus I go! In triumphs, people have dropped down dead. ``Paid by the world, what dost thou owe ``Me?''---God might question; now instead, 'Tis God shall repay: I am safer so.
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