from Ave Atque Vale
by Algernon Charles Swinburne
For thee, O now a silent soul, my brother,
Take at my hands this garland, and farewell.
Thin is the leaf, and chill the wintry smell,
And chill the solemn earth, a fatal mother,
With sadder than the Niobean womb,
And in the hollow of her breasts a tomb.
Content thee, howsoe’er, whose days are done;
There lies not any troublous thing before,
Nor sight nor sound to war against thee more,
For whom all winds are quiet as the sun,
All waters as the shore.
1 thought on “Ave Atque Vale”
It may be worth mentioning that the title of this poem is a reference to Catullus’ Poem 101. I’m also fond of Swinburne’s sonnets myself, especially in comparison to his spiraling, long poems, which aren’t as tightly structured or as punchy.