Verse > Oscar Wilde > Poems

Oscar Wilde (1854–1900).  Poems.  1881.

22. Vita Nuova

I STOOD by the unvintageable sea 
  Till the wet waves drenched face and hair with spray, 
  The long red fires of the dying day 
Burned in the west; the wind piped drearily; 
And to the land the clamorous gulls did flee:         5
  “Alas!” I cried, “my life is full of pain, 
  And who can garner fruit or golden grain, 
From these waste fields which travail ceaselessly!” 
  My nets gaped wide with many a break and flaw 
  Nathless I threw them as my final cast  10
  Into the sea, and waited for the end. 
When lo! a sudden glory! and I saw 
  The argent splendour of white limbs ascend, 
  And in that joy forgot my tortured past. 



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