A precious mouldering pleasure 'tis

A precious mouldering pleasure ’tis
To meet an Antique Book
In just the Dress his Century wore
A privilege I think

His venerable Hand to take
And warming in our own
A passage back or two to make
To Times when he was young

His quaint opinions to inspect
His thought to ascertain
On Themes concern our mutual mind
The Literature of Man

What interested Scholars most
What Competitions ran
When Plato was a Certainty
And Sophocles a Man

When Sappho was a living Girl
And Beatrice wore
The Gown that Dante deified
Facts Centuries before

He traverses familiar
As One should come to Town
And tell you all your Dreams were true
He lived where Dreams were born

His presence is Enchantment
You beg him not to go
Old Volume shake their Vellum Heads
And tantalize just so

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A precious mouldering pleasure 'tis