You ask me what since we must part
You shall bring back to me.
Bring back a pure and faithful heart
As true as mine to thee.
You talk of gems from foreign lands,
Of treasure, spoil, and prize.
Ah love! I shall not search your hands
But look into your eyes.
The only treasure this narrator's lover could bring back after a long journey is himself. It's easy to forget that in our modern day of convenience, even a small trip meant days or weeks of no contact. A world-wide voyage during Juliana Horatia Ewing's lifetime (1841-1885) would have meant months, perhaps years. There was peril involved, and in this case, it sounds like a woman wishing her soldier lover farewell on his way to war. No greater treasure would there be than the safe reunion of the two. Direct, simple, and sincere.