Thine emulous fond flowers are dead, too,
And the daft sun-assaulter, he
That frighted thee so oft, is fled or dead:
Save only me
(Nor is it sad to thee!)–
Save only me
There is none left to mourn thee in the fields.
The gray grass is scarce dappled with the snow;
Its two banks have no shut upon the river;
But it is long ago–
It seems forever–
Since first I saw thee glance,
With all thy dazzling other ones,
In airy dalliance,
Precipitate in love,
Tossed, tangled, whirled and whiled above,
Like a limp rose-wreath in a fairy dance.
When that was, the soft mist
Of my regret hung not on all the land,
And I was glad for thee,
And glad for me, I wist.
Thou didst not know, who tottered, wandering on high,
That fate had made thee for the pleasure of the wind,
With those great careless wings,
Nor yet, did I.
And there were other things:
It seemed God let thee flutter from His gentle clasp,
Then fearful He had let thee win
Too far beyond Him to be gathered in,
Snatched thee, o’ereager, with ungentle grasp.
Ah! I remember me
How once conspiracy was rife
Against my life–
The languor of it and the dreaming fond;
Surging, the grasses dizzied me of thought,
The breeze three odors brought,
And a gem-flower waves in a wand!
Then I was distraught
And could not speak,
Sidelong, full on my cheek,
What should that reckless zephyr flight
But the wild touch of thy dye-dusty wing!
I found that wing broken today!
For thou art dead, I said,
And the strange birds say.
I found it with the withered leaves
Under the eaves
I was ready to skim through this poem, disregarding it as yet another mushy love poem. (I like very few poems with great declarations of love.)
… And then I got to the fourth stanza, which held in it a sense of impending doom. So, I read on with more interest and sure enough, doom there was.
My favourite is the fifth stanza. I love how it humanizes God. I mean, imagine it. Two very good, kind people and very much in love with one another. Suddenly, one is taken away tragically and suddenly, leaving the other one bereft. I don’t know about you, but if I was the one left living, I’d be asking “Why, God? Did you really mean to take them or was it some sort of cosmic accident?”
And I *really* don’t get the part about “The breeze three odors brought / And a gem-flower waves in a wand!”