My Treasure

By Arthur Weir

“What do you gather?” the maiden said,
Shaking her sunlit curls at me—
“See, these flowers I plucked are dead,
Ah! misery.”
“What do you gather?” the miser said,
Clinking his gold, as he spoke to me—
“I cannot sleep at night for dread
Of thieves,” said he.
“What do you gather?” the dreamer said,
“I dream dreams of what is to be;
Daylight comes, and my dreams are fled,
Ah! woe is me.”
What do you gather?” the young man said—
“I seek fame for eternity,
Toiling on while the world’s abed,
Alone,” said he.
“What do I gather?” I laughing said,
“Nothing at all save memory,
Sweet as flowers, but never dead,
Like thine, Rosie.”
“I have no fear of thieves,” I said,
“Daylight kills not my reverie,
Fame will find I am snug abed,
That comes to me.”
“The past is my treasure, friends,” I said,
“Time but adds to my treasury,
Happy moments are never fled
Away from me.”
“All one needs to be rich,” I said,
“Is to live that his past shall be
Sweet in his thoughts, as a wild rose red,
Eternally.”

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