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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.  The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes.  1917.
 
The Shadow of the Hand
By Richard Henry Stoddard (1825–1903)
 
(Italy)

YOU were very charming, Madam,
  In your silks and satins fine;
And you made your lovers drunken,
  But it was not with your wine.
There were court-gallants in dozens,        5
  There were princes of the land,
And they would have perished for you,
  As they knelt and kissed your hand.
    For they saw no stain upon it,
    It was such a snowy hand.        10
 
But for me, I knew you better;
  And while you were flaunting there,
I remembered some one lying
  With the blood on his white hair.
He was pleading for you, Madam,        15
  Where the shriven spirits stand;
But the Book of Life was darkened
  By the shadow of a hand.
    It was tracing your perdition,
    For the blood upon your hand!        20
 
 
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