by Leigh Hunt
Jenny kissed me when we met,
Jumping from the chair she sat in;
Time, you thief, who love to get
Sweets into your list, put that in:
Say I'm weary, say I'm sad,
Say that health and wealth have missed me,
Say I'm growing old, but add,
Jenny kissed me.
I've loved this little poem since college. With each reading, it's always fresh and accessible. I marvel at how simple words can freeze a moment in time forever.
The "Jenny" here is Jane Carlyle, wife of Scottish essayist, satirist, and historian, Thomas Carlyle. Hunt had visited them to announce the publication of one of Carlyle's works. Today I toast all friends, family and significant others of writers everywhere. Thank you for helping us celebrate each small step in the arduous journey.