Lines To An Old Sweetheart

Once fondly lov'd, and still rememb'red dear, Sweet early Object of my youthful vows, Accept this mark of friendship, warm, sincere, Friendship - 'tis all cold duty now allows. And while you read the simple, artless rhymes, One friendly sigh for him - he asks no more, Who, distant, burns in flaming torrid climes, Or haply lies beneath th' Atlantic roar.


David Hayman

About this work

This is a poem by Robert Burns. It was written in 1786 and is read here by David Hayman.

Themes for this poem

love friendship

Selected for 14 April

April 1786, was a momentous month for the Bard. He signed his name Robert Burnes for the last time. Jean Armour's father repudiated his pregnant daughter's engagement to the impoverished farmer. Burns was still actively planning to emigrate to Jamaica. And on April 14th, a proposal to publish the Kilmarnock Edition of his poems was advertised in the hope of attracting subscribers. Today's poem was inscribed on the fly-leaf of the book that subsequently appeared. The dedicatee was Peggy Thompson. As her former suitor put it: 'Wrote on the blank leaf of a copy of my first Edition, which I sent to an old Sweetheart, then married-'.

Donny O'Rourke

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