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Time to Come.2

O, Death! a black and pierceless pall Hangs round thee, and the future state; No eye may see, no mind may grasp That mystery of Fate. This brain, which now alternate throbs With swelling hope and gloomy fear; This heart, with all the changing hues, That mortal passions bear— This curious frame of human mould, Where unrequited cravings play, This brain, and heart, and wondrous form Must all alike decay. The leaping blood wili​ stop its flow;3 The hoarse death-struggle pass; the cheek Lay bloomless, and the liquid tongue Will then forget to speak. The grave will take me; earth will close O'er cold dull limbs and ashy face; But where, O, Nature, where shall be The soul's abiding place? Will it e'en live? for though its light Must shine till from the body torn; Then, when the oil of life is spent, Still shall the taper burn? O, powerless is this struggling brain To rend the mighty mystery; In dark, uncertain awe it waits The common doom, to die.


1. From the Democratic Review. [back]

2. Revised version of "Our Future Lot," which first appeared in the Long-Islander sometime before 31 October 1838 (the relevant copies of the Long-Islander are no longer extant). More specific information about the Long-Islander printing is unknown at this time. "Our Future Lot" was reprinted in the Long Island Democrat on 31 October 1838. When published as "Time to Come" in the Aurora, the poem appeared with the notation "From the Democratic Review." To date, however, we have not been able to verify that it was published there. [back]

3. The word "wili" should read "will." [back]

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