Verse > Anthologies > Andrew Macphail, ed. > The Book of Sorrow
Andrew Macphail, comp.  The Book of Sorrow.  1916.
XXXI. Tender Memory
From ‘My Kate’
By Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806–1861)
HER air had a meaning, her movements a grace;
You turned from the fairest to gaze on her face:
And when you had once seen her forehead and mouth,
You saw as distinctly her soul and her truth—
                        My Kate.        5
Such a blue inner light from her eyelids outbroke,
You looked at her silence and fancied she spoke:
When she did, so peculiar yet soft was the tone,
Though the loudest spoke also, you heard her alone—
                        My Kate….        10
She never found fault with you, never implied
Your wrong by her right: and yet men at her side
Grew nobler, girls purer, as through the whole town
The children were gladder that pulled at her gown—
                        My Kate.        15
None knelt at her feet confessed lovers in thrall;
They knelt more to God than they used,—that was all:
If you praised her as charming, some asked what you meant,
But the charm of her presence was felt when she went—
                        My Kate.        20
The weak and the gentle, the ribald and rude,
She took as she found them, and did them all good;
It always was so with her—see what you have!
She has made the grass greener even here … with her grave—
                        My Kate….        25

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