We present this work in honor of the poet’s 200th birthday.
Fair maid! believe me, love is like a lake,
Whose crystal depths reflect thy brow of snow;
The roses on thy cheek that come and go,
When in thy azure eyes the smiles awake.
No passing winds the liquid mirror wake,
The cool refreshing airs so softly blow.
But hidden currents in the depths below
The angry surface in an instant shake.
Gaze then in safety from the emerald shore;
Nor launch thy shallop on the treacherous wave.
Even the gentle touch of thy light oar
May rouse the slumbering peril from its grave.
Thy fragile bark is on rough waters tossed;
The picture fades, thou sinkest, and art lost.