“Thou hast been called, Oh Sleep, the friend of woe,
But ’tis the happy who have called thee so.”
Southey’s Curse of Kehama
What tho’ soft slumber oft denies,
To shed her sweets on tear swollen eyes,
And often freely will bestow
On those who sorrow never know,
To mourners e’er her soothing balm,
Possesses still a double charm.
It gives the aching eye relief
And lightens half the bosom’s grief,
That mourner who perceives her nigh,
Will bid the sweet intruder fly.
Kehama’s curse might long deny,
Her hand to seal Ladurlad’s eye,
In sweet oblivion steep his pain,
His burning heart and burning brain.
Yet had she in that torturing hour,
Come, reckless of the tyrant’s power
Had Kailyal or Ladurlad chased,
The pleasing power that brought them rest,
No, they had hailed thee, “Friend of Woe”
And still delighted called thee so.