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As she withdrew into the golden cloud,
And I was left alone within the bower;
And from that time to this I am alone,
And I shall be alone until I die.

Vans

“Yet, mother Ida, harken ere I die.
Fairest—why fairest wife ? am I not fair ?
My love hath told me so a thousand times.
Methinks I must be fair, for yesterday,
When I past by, a wild and wanton pard,
Eyed like the evening star, with playful tail
Crouch'd fawning in the weed. Most loving is she?
Ah me, my mountain shepherd, that my arms
Were wound about thee, and my hot lips prest
Close, close to thine in that quick-falling dew
Of fruitful kisses, thick as Autumn rains
Flash in the pools of whirling Simois.

quest

“O mother, hear me yet before I die...?
They came, they cut away my tallest pines,
My dark tall pines, that plumed the craggy ledge
High over the blue gorge, and all between
The snowy peak and snow-white cataract
Foster'd the callow eaglet-from beneath
Whose thick mysterious boughs in the dark morn
The panther's roar came muffled, while I sat
Low in the valley. Never, never more
Shall lone none see the morning mist
Sweep thro’ them ; never see them overlaid
With narrow moon-lit slips of silver cloud,
Between the loud stream and the trembling stars.

“O mother, hear me yet before I die. 1-qism
I wish that somewhere in the ruin'd folds,
Among the fragments tumbled from the glens,
Or the dry thickets, I could meet with her,
The Abominable, that uninvited came
Into the fair Peleïan banquet-hall,
And cast the golden fruit upon the board,
And bred this change ; that I might speak my mind
And tell her to her face how much I hate
Her presence, hated both of Gods and men.

O mother, hear me yet before I die. Hath he not sworn his love a thousand times,

In this green valley, under this green hill,
Ev'n on this hand, and sitting on this stone ?
Seal'd it with kisses ? water'd it with tears?
O happy tears, and how unlike to these !
O happy Heaven, how canst thou see my face?
O happy earth, how canst thou bear my weight ?
O death, death, death, thou ever-floating cloud,
There are enough unhappy on this earth,
Pass by the happy souls, that love to live :
I pray thee, pass before my light of life,
And shadow all my soul, that I may die.
Thou weighest heavy on the heart within,
Weigh heavy on my eyelids : let me die.

“O mother, hear me yet before I die.
I will not die alone, for fiery thoughts
Do shape themselves within me, more and more,
Whereof I catch the issue, as I hear
Dead sounds at night come from the inmost hills,
Like footsteps upon wool. I dimly see

doubtful purpose, as a mother
Conjectures of the features of her child
Ere it is born her child !-a shudder comes
Across me: never child be born of me,
Unblest, to vex me with his father's eyes

“O mother, hear me yet before I die.
Hear me, 0 earth. I will not die alone,
Lest their shrill happy laughter come to me
Walking the cold and starless road of Death
Uncomforted, leaving my ancient love
With the Greek woman.

I will rise and go
Down into Troy, and ere the stars come forth
Talk with the wild Cassandra, for she says
A fire dances before her, and a sound
Rings ever in her ears of armed men.
What this may be I know not, but I know
That, wheresoe'er I am by night and day,

All earth and air seem only burning fire.” (1853)

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My far

LXXIII

THE SISTERS
We were two daughters of one race:
She was the fairest in the face :

The wind is blowing in turret and tree.

They were together, and she fell;
Therefore revenge became me well.

O the Earl was fair to see !
She died : she went to burning flame:
She mix'd her ancient blood with shame.

The wind is howling in turret and tree.
Whole weeks and months, and early and late,
To win his love I lay in wait :

O the Earl was fair to see!
I made a feast; I bad him come;
I won his love, I brought him home.

The wind is roaring in turret and tree.
And after supper, on a bed,
Upon my lap he laid his head :

O the Earl was fair to see!
I kiss'd his eyelids into rest :
His ruddy cheek upon my breast.

The wind is raging in turret and tree.
I hated him with the hate of hell,
But I loved his beauty passing well.

O the Earl was fair to see!
I rose up in the silent night:
I made my dagger sharp and bright.

The wind is raving in turret and tree.
As half-asleep his breath he drew,
Three times I stabb'd him thro' and thro'.

O the Earl was fair to see !
I curld and comb'd his comely head,
He look'd so grand when he was dead.

The wind is blowing in turret and tree.
I wrapt his body in the sheet,
And laid him at his mother's feet.

O the Earl was fair to see! (1853)

LXXIV

TO

WITH THE PALACE OF ART'

I SEND you here a sort of allegory,
(For you will understand it) of a soul,
A sinful soul possess'd of many gifts,

A spacious garden full of flowering weeds,
A glorious Devil, large in heart and brain,
That did love Beauty only, (Beauty seen
In all varieties of mould and mind)
And Knowledge for its beauty; or if Good,
Good only for its beauty, seeing not
That Beauty, Good, and Knowledge, are three sisters
That doat upon each other, friends to man,
Living together under the same roof,
And never can be sunder'd without tears.
And he that shuts Love out, in turn shall be
Shut out from Love, and on her threshold lie
Howling in outer darkness. Not for this
Was common clay ta'en from the common earth,
Moulded by God, and temper'd with the tears
Of angels to the perfect shape of man.

LXXV

THE PALACE OF ART I BUILT my soul a lordly pleasure-house,

Wherein at ease for aye to dwell. I said, “O Soul, make merry

and carouse, Dear soul, for all is well.”' A huge crag-platform, smooth as burnish'd brass,

I chose. The ranged ramparts bright

I Teveth the har-bases of deep grass

Suddenly scaled the light.
Thereon I built it firm. Of ledge or shelf

The rock rose clear, or winding stair.
My soul would live alone unto herself

In her high palace there.
And “while the world runs round and round," I said,

Reign thou apart, a quiet king,
Still as, while Saturn whirls, his stedfast shade

Sleeps on his luminous ring."
To which my soul made answer readily :

“Trust me, in bliss I shall abide
In this great mansion, that is built for me,

So royal-rich and wide."

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Four courts I made, East, West and South and North,

In each a squared lawn, wherefrom
The golden gorge of dragons spouted forth

A flood of fountain-foam.
And round the cool green courts there ran a row

Of cloisters, branch'd like mighty woods,
Echoing all night to that sonorous flow

Of spouted fountain-floods.
And round the roofs a gilded gallery

That lent broad verge to distant lands,
Far as the wild swan wings, to where the sky

Dipt down to sea and sands.
From those four jets four currents in one swell

Across the mountain stream'd below
In misty folds, that floating as they fell

Lit up a torrent-bow.
And high on every peak a statue seem'd

To hang on tiptoe, tossing up
A cloud of incense of all odour steam'd

From out a golden cup.
So that she thought, “And who shall gaze upon

My palace with unblinded eyes,
While this great bow will waver in the sun,

And that sweet incense rise ?"
For that sweet incense rose and never fail'd,

And, while day sank or mounted higher,
The light aërial gallery, golden-rail'd,

Burnt like a fringe of fire.
Likewise the deep-set windows, stain'd and traced,

Would seem slow-flaming crimson fires
From shadow'd grots of arches interlaced,

And tipt with frost-like spires.

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Full of long-sounding corridors it was,

That oyer-vaulted grateful gloom,
Thro' which the livelong day my soul did pass,
Well-pleased, from room to room,

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