John Boyle O'Reilly
A Lost Friend
MY friend he was; my friend from all the rest;
With childlike faith he oped to me his breast;
No door was locked on altar, grave or grief;
No weakness veiled, concealed no disbelief;
The hope, the sorrow and the wrong were bare,
And ah, the shadow only showed the fair!
I gave him love for love; but, deep within,
I magnified each frailty into sin:
Each hill-topped foible in the sunset glowed,
Obscuring vales where rivered virtttes flowed.
Reproof became reproach, till common grew
The captious word at every fault I knew.
He smiled upon the censorship, and bore
With patient love the touch that wounded sore;
Until at length, so had my blindness grown,
He knew I judged him by his faults alone.
Alone, of all men, I who knew him best,
Refused the gold, to take the dross for test!
Cold strangers honored for the worth they saw;
His friend forgot the diamond in the flaw.
At last it came—the day he stood apart
When from my eyes he proudly veiled his heart;
When carping judgment and uncertain word
A stern resentment in his bosom stirred;
When in his face I read what I had been,
And with his vision saw what he had seen.
Too late! too late! Oh, could he then have known,
When his love died, that mine had perfect grown;
That when the veil was drawn, abased, chastised,
The censor stood, the lost one truly prized.
Too late we learn—a man must hold his friend
Unjudged, accepted, trusted to the end.
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (A Lost Friend by John Boyle O'Reilly )
- गोजाननि खौरां, Ronjoy Brahma
- Let us believe, hasmukh amathalal
- Christmas Again, Katherine Nordhaus
- Money, Katherine Nordhaus
- Older, Frank Avon
- A question to seasons, Melikhaya Zagagana
- Languid leman, Melikhaya Zagagana
- Tweet-tweet! I Visited a Hamlet with a G.., Harindhar Reddy
- PURITY OF SNOW., Terry Collett
- What If You Had No Beliefs? NONE!, Mr. Nobody
Poem of the Day
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- Daffodils, William Wordsworth
- Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
- Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
- On the Pulse of Morning, Maya Angelou
- Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
- Fire and Ice, Robert Frost
- All the World's a Stage, William Shakespeare
- Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
- As I Grew Older, Langston Hughes
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
- Heather Burns
(31 October 1795 – 23 February 1821)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
(13 September 1916 – 23 November 1990)
(7 May 1861 – 7 August 1941)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)