'Arab's Farewell to his Horse'
Arab's Farewell to his Horse.
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My beautiful! my beautiful! that standest meekly by,
With thy proudly arch'd and glossy neck, and dark and fiery
Fret not to roam the desert now with all thy winged speed,
I may not mount on thee again-thou art sold, my Arab
Fret not with that impatient hoof, snuff not the breezy wind,
The further that thou fliest now, so far am I behind.
The stranger hath thy bridle rein-thy master hath his gold-
Fleet limbed and beautiful, farewell, thou'rt sold, my steed,
Farewell, these free untired limbs full many a mile must
To reach the chill and wintry sky which clouds the stran-
Some other hand, less fond, must now thy corn and bed
The silky mane I braided once must be another's care.
The morning sun shall dawn again, but never more with thee
Shall I gallop through the desert paths where we were wont
Evening shall darken on the earth, and o'er the sandy plain,
Some other steed, with slower step, shall bear me home
Yes, thou must go, the wild free breeze, the brilliant sun
Thy master's home, from all of these my exiled one must fly.
Thy proud dark eye will grow less proud, thy step become
And vainly shalt thou arch thy neck thy master's hand to
Only in sleep shall I behold that dark eye glancing bright;
Only in sleep shall hear again that step so firm and light;
And when I raise my dreaming arm to check and cheer thy
Then must I startling wake to feel thou'rt sold, my Arab
Ah! rudely then, unseen by me, some cruel hand may chide,
Till foam-wreathes lie, like crested waves, along thy panting
And the rich blood that is in thee swells in thy indignant
Till careless eyes, which rest on thee, may count each started
Will they ill-use thee? If I thought-but no it cannot be-
Thou art so swift yet easy curbed, so gentle yet so free.
And yet, if haply when thou'rt gone, my lonely heart should
Can the hand which casts thee from it now command thee
Return, alas! my Arab steed, what shall thy master do,
When thou who wert his all of joy hath vanished from his
When the dim distance cheats mine eye, and, through the
Thy bright form for a moment like the false mirage appears,
Slow and unmounted will I roam, with weary foot alone,
Where with fleet step and joyous bound thou oft has borne
And sitting down by that green well I'll pause and sadly
It was here he bowed his glossy neck when last I saw him
When last I saw thee drink? Away! the fevered dream is
I could not live a day and know that we should meet no
They tempted me, my beautiful! for hunger' s power is strong,
They tempted me, my beautiful! but I have loved too long.
Who said that I'd giv'n thee up, who said that thou wert
'Tis false, 'tis false, my Arab steed, I fling them back their
Thus, thus, I leap upon thy back and scour the distant plains,
Away! who overtakes us now shall claim thee for his pains!
CommentaryThis ballad begins: 'My beautiful! my beautiful! that standest meekly by, / With thy proudly arch'd and glossy neck, and dark and fiery eye'. This broadside was priced at one penny and published on Saturday, 5th June 1869. It was published by the Poet's Box, (probably Glasgow) but the town of publication has been obscured.
BLOGGER'S NOTE. I decided to leave these rather boring notes attached, because? I was so intrigued by? all the? question marks. I suppose they were meant to represent some? other kind of punctuation mark, but I can't quite? figure out which one. My favorite passage is:
"Soap for lovers?!". These people were obviously well ahead of their time.
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