|by Christina Rossetti*|
Remember me when I am gone away,
Gone far away into the silent land;
When you can no more hold me by the hand,
Nor I half turn to go yet turning stay.
Remember me when no more day by day
You tell me of our future that you plann'd:
Only remember me; you understand
It will be late to counsel then or pray.
Yet if you should forget me for a while
And afterwards remember, do not grieve:
For if the darkness and corruption leave
A vestige of the thoughts that once I had,
Better by far you should forget and smile
Than that you should remember and be sad.
Christina Rossetti (1830-1894) was born in London to an artistic family — her brother was the famous poet and painter Dante Gabriel Rossetti and her house was a regular meeting place for the group of artists later called the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. As a devout Anglican, Rossetti called off a two-year engagement when her fiancé converted to Roman Catholicism. Despite a lifetime of illness, Rossetti continued to write poetry. Today she is best known for her collection Goblin Market and Other Poems.
Poem and biography taken from http://www.poetryfoundation.org/archive/poem.html?id=174266