Verse > Anthologies > Higginson and Bigelow, eds. > American Sonnets
Higginson and Bigelow, comps.  American Sonnets.  1891.
A Portrait
By James Berry Bensel (1856–1886)
IN the white sweetness of her dimpled chin
  The pink points of her perfumed fingers press,
  And ’round her tremulous mouth’s loveliness
The tears and smiles a sudden strife begin:
First one and then the other seems to win:        5
  And o’er her drooping eyes a golden tress
  Falls down to hide what else they might confess
Their blue-veined lids are striving to shut in.
The yellow pearls that bind her throat about
  With her pale bosom’s throbbing rise or fall:        10
    The while her thoughts like carrier-doves have fled
To that far land where armies clash and shout,
  And where, beyond love’s reach, a soldier tall
    With staring eyes and broken sword lies dead.

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