Epilogue

By Robert Browning 1812–1889 Robert Browning
   At the midnight in the silence of the sleep-time,
      When you set your fancies free,
Will they pass to where—by death, fools think, imprisoned—
Low he lies who once so loved you, whom you loved so,
             —Pity me?

   Oh to love so, be so loved, yet so mistaken!
      What had I on earth to do
With the slothful, with the mawkish, the unmanly?
Like the aimless, helpless, hopeless, did I drivel
             —Being—who?

   One who never turned his back but marched breast forward,
      Never doubted clouds would break,
Never dreamed, though right were worsted, wrong would triumph,
Held we fall to rise, are baffled to fight better,
             Sleep to wake.

   No, at noonday in the bustle of man's work-time
      Greet the unseen with a cheer!
Bid him forward, breast and back as either should be,
"Strive and thrive!" cry "Speed,—fight on, fare ever
             There as here!"

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Poet Robert Browning 1812–1889

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD Victorian

Subjects Living, Love, Social Commentaries, War & Conflict, Relationships, Death, Heartache & Loss, Realistic & Complicated

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

 Robert  Browning

Biography

Although the early part of Robert Browning’s creative life was spent in comparative obscurity, he has come to be regarded as one of the most important poets of the Victorian period. His dramatic monologues and the psycho-historical epic The Ring and the Book (1868-1869), a novel in verse, have established him as a major figure in the history of English poetry. His claim to attention as a children’s writer is more modest, resting . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Love, Social Commentaries, War & Conflict, Relationships, Death, Heartache & Loss, Realistic & Complicated

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD Victorian

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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