We include within Part III of our little exhibit of Valentine’s cards, a poem by William B. Vickers, a 19th century native of Indianapolis.
Turn back, oh, time, thy tempest flight,
The busy day, the restless night,
The years that slip so swiftly past,
The centuries that cannot last,
And let a healing touch of thine
Renew the youth of Valentine.
Roused from his medieval sleep,
I know the good old saint would weep
To see the uses base and low
That time has brought his memory to,
But bright through all the ages shine
The virtues of St. Valentine.
Love loses nothing of its worth,
And beauty bides upon the earth,
The same to-day as when of old,
With sweetest song the lover bold,
Decked like a bridegroom rare and fine,
Came forth to greet his Valentine.
His Valentine? Ah, well-a-day!
She dawned upon him like the May,
In distant isles whose radiance
Reflects the morning’s brightest glance,
But not less fair and brightly shine
The graces of my Valentine.
I do not rave about her eyes,
Nor laud her beauty to the skies,
But she is beautiful to me,
And in her love-lit eyes I see
A liquid light like ruby wine,
The soul of my sweet Valentine.
She is not grave, nor gay, nor yet
Doth pride its seal upon her set,
Else I had. never won her love,
To prize all earthly gifts above,
Rut gentle graces all combine
In her, my precious Valentine.
Her speech the voice of wisdom is,
And golden are her silences,
Her smiles are set to music sweet,
Her love is like the waves that beat
Upon the shore in ceaseless line,
And so I love my Valentine.
William B. Vickers was born in Indianapolis, Indiana, March 21, 1838, and died in Denver, Colorado, in 1880. After graduating from Asbury (now De Pauw) University he determined upon the newspaper
business as a career, and learned the printers’ trade. He was for several years associated with Harry J. Shellman and William B. Vischer in the management of the Indianapolis Saturday Mirror,
the best literary paper then published in the state. Mr. Vickers was a brilliant, painstaking writer, and a poet of great gifts, as the selections from his verse amply prove. [from Poets and Poetry of Indiana, Silver Burdett & Co., 1900]