The maiden's cheek blush'd ruby bright.
And her heart beat quick with its own delight;
Again she should dwell on those vows so dear.
Almost as if her lover were near.
Little deemed she that letter would tell
How that true lover fought and fell.
The maiden read till her cheek grew pale—
Yon drooping eye tells all the tale :
She sees her own knight's last fond prayer.
And she reads in that scroll her heart's despair.
Oh ! grave, how terrible art thou
To young hearts bound in one fond vow.
Oh ! human love, how vain is thy trust;
Hope ! how soon art thou laid in dust.
Thou fatal pilgrim, who art thou.
As thou fling'st the black veil from thy shadowy brow?
I know thee now, dark lord of the tomb.
By the pale maiden's withering bloom :
The light is gone from her glassy eye.
And her cheek is struck by mortality ;
From her parted lip there comes no breath.
For that scroll was fate—its bearer—Death.
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