With my beer
I sit,
While golden moments flit:
    They pass
Unheeded by:
And, as they fly,
Being dry,
    Sit, idly sipping here
    My beer.

O, finer far
Than fame, or riches, are
The graceful smoke-wreaths of this free cigar!
    Should I
    Weep, wail, or sigh?
    What if luck has passed me by?
What if my hopes are dead,— 
My pleasures fled?
    Have I not still
    My fill
Of right good cheer,—
Cigars and beer?

    Go, whining youth,
Go, weep and wail,
Sigh and grow pale,
    Weave melancholy rhymes
    On the old times,
Whose joys like shadowy ghosts appear,—
But leave me to my beer!
    Gold is dross,—
    Love is loss,—
So, if I gulp my sorrows down,
Or see them drown
In foamy draughts of old nut-brown,
Then do I wear the crown,
    Without the cross!

Source: Drift: A Sea-Shore Idyl and Other Poems (1866)
More Poems by George Arnold