Verse > Anthologies > Harriet Monroe, ed. > Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, 1912–22
Harriet Monroe, ed. (1860–1936).  Poetry: A Magazine of Verse.  1912–22.
The Curse
By Elizabeth J. Coatsworth
From “Vermilion Seals”

ON the cord dead hangs our sister,
She of the wondrous lily feet.
They have blasted our fragrant flower—
She shall curse them as is meet!
Hold the broom in her dead hand—        5
Raise her up until she stand.
Backward, forward, sweep the room!
Wealth and happiness and long life
Sweeps she with avenging broom
From the house where she was wife.        10
Backward, forward, sweep the broom
Sweeping doom, sweeping doom!
Now the gods will surely punish—
Surely pity the young bride.
She was like a willow blossom,        15
It was springtime when she died.
Hold the broom in her dead hand—
Raise her up until she stand!
She was always flower-gay
Till they broke her smiling heart.        20
In this house she would not stay—
Take her up—let us depart.

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