Verse > Anthologies > J. C. Squire, ed. > A Book of Women’s Verse
J. C. Squire, ed.  A Book of Women’s Verse.  1921.
Cambridge in the Long
By Amy Levy (1861–1889)
WHERE drowsy sound of college-chimes
  Across the air is blown,
And drowsy fragrance of the limes,
  I lie and dream alone.
A dazzling radiance reigns o’er all—        5
  O’er gardens densely green,
O’er old grey bridges and the small,
  Slow flood which slides between.
This is the place; it is not strange,
  But known of old and dear.        10
What went I forth to seek? The change
  Is mine; why am I here?
Alas, in vain I turned away,
  I fled the town in vain;
The strenuous life of yesterday        15
  Calleth me back again.
And was it peace I came to seek?
  Yet here, where memories throng,
Ev’n here, I know the past is weak,
  I know the present strong.        20
This drowsy fragrance, silent heat,
  Suit not my present mind,
Whose eager thought goes out to meet
  The life it left behind.
Spirit with sky to change; such hope,        25
  An idle one we know;
Unship the oars, make loose the rope,
  Push off the boat and go …
Ah, would what binds me could have been
  Thus loosened at a touch!        30
This pain of living is too keen,
  Of loving, is too much.

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