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Short poem

Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-1861)

Past and Future

              1MY future will not copy fair my past
              2On any leaf but Heaven's. Be fully done,
              3Supernal Will ! I would not fain be one
              4Who, satisfying thirst and breaking fast
              5Upon the fulness of the heart, at last
              6Saith no grace after meat. My wine hath run
              7Indeed out of my cup, and there is none
              8To gather up the bread of my repast
              9Scattered and trampled ! Yet I find some good
            10In earth's green herbs, and streams that bubble up
            11Clear from the darkling ground, -- content until
            12I sit with angels before better food.
            13Dear Christ ! when thy new vintage fills my cup,
            14This hand shall shake no more, nor that wine spill.

Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: Elizabeth Barrett Browning. Poems. London: Edward Moxon, 1844. PR 4180 E44a ROBA. 19th-cent. STC: 5.1.511. mfe DA 533 N55.
First publication date: 1844
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
RP edition: Not in printed RP.
Recent editing: 2:2002/2/6

Form: sonnet
Rhyme: abbaabbacdecde

Other poems by Elizabeth Barrett Browning