Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
By Sir Gilbert Parker (1862–1932)
WHEN you and I have play’d the little hour,
  Have seen the tall subaltern Life to Death
  Yield up his sword; and, smiling, draw the breath,
The first long breath of freedom; when the flower
Of Recompense hath flutter’d to our feet,        5
  As to an actor’s; and, the curtain down,
  We turn to face each other all alone—
Alone, we two, who never yet did meet,
Alone, and absolute, and free: O then,
  O then, most dear, how shall be told the tale?        10
Clasp’d hands, press’d lips, and so clasp’d hands again;
  No words. But as the proud wind fills the sail,
    My love to yours shall reach, then one deep moan
    Of joy, and then our infinite Alone.

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