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Yet, ah me! if at her head

There another phantom lean
Murmuring o'er the fragrant bed, -

Ah ! and if my spirit's queen
Smile those alien words between, --

Ah! poor shade!
Shall it strive, or fade unseen?

How should love's own messenger

Strive with love and be love's foe ? Master, nay! If thus, in her,

Sleep a wedded heart should show, Silent let mine image go,

Its old share Of thy sunken air to know.

Like a vapour wan and mute,

Like a flame, so let it pass ;
One low sigh across her lute,

One dull breath against her glass;
And to my sad soul, alas !

One salute
Cold as when death's foot shall pass.

Then, too, let all hopes of mine,

All vain hopes by night and day,
Slowly at thy summoning sign

Rise up pallid and obey,
Dreams, if this is thus, were they :-

Be they thine,
And to dreamland pine away.

Yet from old time, life, not death,

Master, in thy rule is rife :
Lo! through thee, with mingling breath,

Adam woke beside his wife.
O Love bring me so, for strife,

Force and faith,
Bring me so not death but life!

Yea, to Love himself is pour'd

This frail song of hope and fear.
Thou art Love, of one accord

With kind Sleep to bring her near,
Still-eyed, deep-eyed, ah how dear!

Master, Lord,
In her name implor'd, O hear!


Some ladies love the jewels in Love's zone

And gold-tipped darts he hath for painless play

In idle scornful hours he flings away ;
And some that listen to his Lute's soft tone
Do love to vaunt the silver praise their own;

Some prize his blindfold sight; and there be they

Who kissed his wings which brought him yesterday And thank his wings to-day that he is flown.

My lady only loves the heart of Love :

Therefore Love's heart, my lady, hath for thee

His bower of unimagined flower and tree: There kneels he now, and all-anhungered of Thine eyes grey-lit in shadowing hair above,

Seals with thy mouth his immortality.


Between the hands, between the brows,

Between the lips of Love-Lily,
A spirit is born whose birth endows

My blood with fire to burn through me;
Who breathes upon my gazing eyes,

Who laughs and murmurs in mine ear,
At whose least touch my colour flies,

And whom my life grows faint to hear.

Within the voice, within the heart,

Within the mind of Love-Lily,
A spirit is born who lists apart

His tremulous wings and looks at me ;
Who on my mouth his finger lays,

And shows, while whispering lutes confer.
That Eden of Love's watered ways

Whose winds and spirits worship her.

Brows, hands, and lips, heart, mind, and voice,

Kisses and words of Love-Lily,-
Oh! bid me with your joy rejoice

Till riotous longing rest in me !
Ah ! let not hope be still distraught,

But find in her its gracious goal,
Whose speech Truth knows not from her thought

Nor Love her body from her soul.


"Vhat shall be said of this embattled day

And armed occupation of this night

By all thy foes beleaguered,—now when sight Nor sound denotes the loved one far away? Of these thy vanquished hours what shalt thou say,

As every sense to which she dealt delight

Now labours lonely o’er the stark noon-height To reach the sunset's desolate disarray ?

Stand still, fond fettered wretch! while Memory's art

Parades the Past before thy face, and lures

Thy spirit to her passionate portraitures : Till the tempestuous tide-gates Aung apart Flood with wild will the hollows of thy heart,

And thy heart rends thee, and thy body endures.


This is her picture as she was :

It seems a thing to wonder on,
As though mine image in the glass

Should tarry when myself am gone.
I gaze until she seems to stir,
Until mine eyes almost aver

That now, even now, the sweet lips part

To breathe the words of the sweet heart :Aud yet the earth is over her.

Alas! even such the thin-drawn ray

That makes the prison-depths more rude, The drip of water night and day

Giving a tongue to solitude.
Yet this, of all love's perfect prize,
Remains; save what in mournful guise

Takes counsel with my soul alone, –

Save what is secret and unknown, Below the earth, above the skies.

In painting her I shrined her face

Mid mystic trees, where light falls in Hardly at all; a covert place

Where you may think to find a din Of doubtful talk, and a live flame Wandering, and many a shape whose name

Not itself knoweth, and old dew,

And your own footsteps meeting you, And all things going as they came.

A deep dim wood; and there she stands

As in that wood that day : for so Was the still movement of her hands

And such the pure line's gracious flow.

And passing fair the type must seem,
Unknown the presence and the dream.

'Tis she : though of herself, alas !

Less than her shadow on the grass Or than her image in the stream.

That day we met there, I and she

One with the other all alone ;
And we were blithe ; yet memory

Saddens those hours, as when the moon
Looks upon daylight. And with her
I stooped to drink the spring-water,

Athirst where other waters sprang ;

And where the echo is, she sang,– My soul another echo there.

But when that hour my soul won strength

For words whose silence wastes and kills, Dull raindrops smote us, and at length

Thundered the heat within the hills. That eve I spoke those words again Beside the pelted window-pane ;

And there she hearkened what I said,

With under-glances that surveyed The empty pastures blind with rain.

Next day the memories of these things,

Like leaves through which a bird has flown, Still vibrated with Love's warm wings;

Till I must make them all my own And paint this picture. So, 'twixt ease Of talk and sweet long silences,

She stood among the plants in bloom

At windows of a summer room, To feign the shadow of the trees.

And as I wrought, while all above

And all around was fragrant air, In the sick burthen of my love

It seemed each sun-thrilled blossom there

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