Verse > Anthologies > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of English Verse
Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. 1919. The Oxford Book of English Verse: 1250–1900.
Christina Georgina Rossetti. 1830–1894
788. Aloof
THE irresponsive silence of the land, 
  The irresponsive sounding of the sea, 
  Speak both one message of one sense to me:— 
Aloof, aloof, we stand aloof, so stand 
Thou too aloof, bound with the flawless band         5
  Of inner solitude; we bind not thee; 
  But who from thy self-chain shall set thee free? 
What heart shall touch thy heart? What hand thy hand? 
And I am sometimes proud and sometimes meek, 
  And sometimes I remember days of old  10
When fellowship seem'd not so far to seek, 
  And all the world and I seem'd much less cold, 
  And at the rainbow's foot lay surely gold, 
And hope felt strong, and life itself not weak. 

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