Sweet deceiver! who so oft
Hast lulled my soul with visions soft;
When the heart is new and young,
Thou dost come with honeyed tongue,
Whispering to confiding youth
Tales of Friendship, Love, and Truth:
In thy mirror life is seen
Bright and pure and evergreen!
Alas! and must thy visions fade?
Thy brightness darken into shade?
The clear, but cold reality
Breathes upon thy reverie,
Straight thy fairy visions fly,
Their gorgeous hues grow pale and die;
We find that Friendship can betray,
Or wither in Misfortune’s day;
We find that dirty gold can buy
The glance of love in Beauty’s eye,
That sordid wealth can cover crime,
That merit stoops, while blockheads climb!
Romance! thy fairy spell is o’er,
Thy lovely visions charm no more;
Too often by thy wiles betrayed,
I’ll woo no more thy gentle aid;
Yet why?—'Tis pleasing to believe
Thy dreams are sweet, though they deceive.