On reading in a Newspaper the Death of John M’Leod, Esq. (Poem by Robert Burns)

Old Poem



On reading in a Newspaper the Death of John M’Leod, Esq.
By Robert Burns


Sad thy tale, thou idle page,
    And rueful thy alarms:
Death tears the brother of her love
    From Isabella’s arms.

Sweetly deck’d with pearly dew
    The morning rose may blow;
But cold successive noontide blasts
    May lay its beauties low.

Fair on Isabella’s morn
    The sun propitious smil’d;
But, long ere noon, succeeding clouds
    Succeeding hopes beguil’d.

Fate oft tears the bosom chords
    That nature finest strung:
So Isabella’s heart was form’d,
    And so that heart was wrung.

Were it in the poet’s power,
    Strong as he shares the grief
That pierces Isabella’s heart,
    To give that heart relief!

Dread Omnipotence, alone,
    Can heal the wound He gave;
Can point the brimful grief-worn eyes
    To scenes beyond the grave.

Virtue’s blossoms there shall blow,
    And fear no withering blast;
There Isabella’s spotless worth
    Shall happy be at last.

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