To One Who Would Make A Confession

written by Wilfrid Scawen Blunt

To One Who Would Make A Confession

— Wilfrid Scawen Blunt

Oh! leave the past to buy its own dead.
The past is naught to us, the present all.
What need of last year's leaves to strew Love's bed?
What need of ghosts to grace a festival?
I would not, if I could, those days recall,
Those days not ours. For us the feast is spread.
The lamps are lit, and music plays withal.
Then let us love and leave the rest unsaid.
This island is our home. Around it roar
Great gulfs and oceans, channels, straits and seas.
What matter in what wreck we reached the shore,
So we both reached it? We can mock at these.
Oh! leave the past, if past indeed there be;
I would not know it; I would know but thee.

About the poet


Wilfrid Scawen Blunt

Second son of Francis Blunt and born into an old Sussex family. When he was eighteen he entered the British diplomatic corps and he worked in Athens, Constantinople, Frankfort, Lisbon, Madrid, Paris and Argentina. After his retirement in 1872 and his marriage to Anne Isabella Noel (the only known descendant of Lord Byron). They first met in Venice and he observed that 'she thought herself plainer than she was'. Together with his wife he travelled on horseback through the Mid-East and lived in Cairo. Blunt opposed British rule in Egypt and was also in favor of Irish home rule. For the latter he even served a prison term. Blunt had an affair with Jane Morris, wife of William Morris and model...

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