Verse > Anthologies > Alfred H. Miles, ed. > Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century
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CONTENTS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
Alfred H. Miles, ed.  Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century.  1907.
 
Love-Trilogy
By Mathilde Blind (1841–1896)
 
I.
SHE stood against the Orient sun,
Her face inscrutable for light;
A myriad larks in unison
Sang o’er her, soaring out of sight.
 
A myriad flowers around her feet        5
Burst flame-like from the yielding sod,
Till all the wandering airs were sweet
With incense mounting up to God.
 
A mighty rainbow shook, inclined
Towards her, from the Occident,        10
Girdling the cloud-wrack which enshrined
Half the light-bearing firmament.
 
Lit showers flashed golden o’er the hills,
And trees flung silver to the breeze,
And, scattering diamonds, fleet-foot rills        15
Fled laughingly across the leas.
 
Yea Love, the skylarks laud but thee,
And writ in flowers thine awful name;
Spring is thy shade, dread Ecstasy,
And life a brand which feeds thy flame.        20
 
II.
        WINDING all my life about thee,
          Let me lay my lips on thine;
        What is all the world without thee,
                  Mine—oh mine!
 
        Let me press my heart out on thee,        25
          Grape of life’s most fiery vine,
        Spilling sacramental on thee
                  Love’s red wine.
 
        Let thy strong eyes yearning o’er me
          Draw me with their force divine;        30
        All my soul has gone before me
                  Clasping thine.
 
        If I follow, oh my lover,
          As the shadow follows shine,
        ’Tis because my heart’s run over        35
                  Full in thine.
 
        Yea, all springs of life in motion,
          O belovèd one, combine,
        Mix as rain drops with the ocean,
                  Mine and thine.        40
 
III.
I CHARGE you, O winds of the West, O winds with the wings of the dove,
That ye seek the beloved of my soul, breathing low that I sicken for love.
 
I charge you, O dews of the Dawn, O tears of the star of the morn,
That ye fall at the feet of my love with the sound of one weeping forlorn.
 
I charge you, O birds of the Air, O birds flying home to your nest,        45
That ye sing in his ears of the joy that for ever has fled from my breast.
 
I charge you, O flowers of the Earth, O frailest of things, and most fair.
That ye droop in his path as the life in me shrivels consumed by despair.
 
O Moon, when he lifts up his face, when he seeth the waning of thee,
A memory of her who lies wan on the limits of life let it be.        50
 
Many tears cannot quench, nor my sighs extinguish the flames of love’s fire,
Which lifteth my heart like a wave, and smites it, and breaks its desire.
 
I rise like one in a dream when I see the red sun flaring low.
That drags me back shuddering from sleep each morning to life with its woe.
 
I go like one in a dream, unbidden my feet know the way        55
To that garden where love stood in blossom with the red and white hawthorn of May.
 
The song of the throstle is hushed, and the fountain is dry to its core,
The moon cometh up as of old; she seeks, but she finds him no more.
 
The pale-faced, pitiful moon shines down on the grass where I weep,
My face to the earth, and my breast in an anguish ne’er soothed into sleep.        60
 
The moon returns, and the spring, birds warble, trees burst into leaf,
But Love once gone, goes for ever, and all that endures is the grief.
 
 
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