To know just how he suffered would be dear; To know if any human eyes were near To whom he could intrust his wavering gaze, Until it settled firm on Paradise. To know if he was patient, part content, Was dying as he thought, or different; Was it a pleasant day to die, And did the sunshine face his way? What was his furthest mind, of home, or God, Or what the distant say At news that he ceased human nature On such a day? And wishes, had he any? Just his sigh, accented, Had been legible to me. And was he confident until Ill fluttered out in everlasting well? And if he spoke, what name was best, What first, What one broke off with At the drowsiest? Was he afraid, or tranquil? Might he know How conscious consciousness could grow, Till love that was, and love too blest to be, Meet - and the junction be Eternity?
About the headline (FAQ)
- by Emily Dickinson (1830 - 1886), no title, appears in Poems of Emily Dickinson, first published 1890 [author's text checked 1 time against a primary source]
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)
- by Thomas Pasatieri (b. 1945), "To know just how he suffered would be dear", published 1976 [soprano, clarinet, violin, violoncello, and piano], from Far from love, no. 10. [text not verified]
Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]