Sunday Poetry – Robert Dodsley

Today’s poem is by Robert Dodsley (picture from here), a poet unknown to me but apparently very well-connected in 18th century literary society. He was a bookseller & publisher who published many of Samuel Johnson’s books & helped to finance the great Dictionary. What drew me to this poem was the first two lines which immediately reminded me of Robert Burns’s Ae Fond Kiss. Dodsley’s poem was earlier & I’ve since discovered through a little googling that Burns was influenced by this poem, The Parting Kiss, when writing his own. Another example of an inferior, though pleasant, work inspiring a masterpiece.

One kind kiss before we part,
Drop a tear, and bid adieu;
Thought we sever, my fond heart
Till we meet shall pant for you.

Yet, yet weep not so, my love,
Let me kiss that falling tear;
Though my body must remove,
All my soul will still be here.

All my soul and all my heart,
And every wish shall pant for you;
One kind kiss then e’er we part,
Drop a tear, and bid adieu.

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