Monday, November 16, 2015

Mistress Quiet-Eyes

While I sit beside the window
I can hear the pigeons coo,
That the air is warm and blue,
And how well the young bird flew—
Then I fold my arms and scold the heart
That thought the pigeons knew.

While I sit beside the window
I can watch the flowers grow
Till the seeds are ripe and blow
To the fruitful earth below—
Then I shut my eyes and tell my heart
The flowers cannot know.

While I sit beside the window
I am growing old and drear ;
Does it matter what I hear,
What I see, or what I fear ?
I can fold my hands and hush my heart
That is straining to a tear.

The earth is gay with leaf and flower,
The fruit is ripe upon the tree,
The pigeons coo in the swinging bower,
But I sit wearily
Watching a beggar-woman nurse
A baby on her knee.

Here are Ladies [1913]

The Moon

If the Moon had a hand
I wonder would she
Stretch it down unto me ?

If she did, I would go
To her glacier land,
To her ice-covered strand.

I would run, I would fly,
Were the cold ever so,
And be warm in the snow.

O Moon of all Light,
Sailing far, sailing high
In the infinite sky.

Do not come down to me,
Lest I shriek in affright,
Lest I die in the night
Of your chill ecstasy.

Here are Ladies [1913]


At the end of the bough, at the top of the tree
(As fragrant, as high, and as lovely as thou),
One sweet apple reddens which all men may see,
At the end of the bough.

Swinging full to the view, tho' the gatherers now
Pass, and evade, and o'erlook busily :
Overlook! nay, but pluck it! they cannot tell how.

For it swings out of reach as a cloud, and as free
As a star, or thy beauty, which seems too, I vow,
Remote as the sweet rosy apple—ah me!
At the end of the bough.

Here are Ladies [1913]

The Daises

In the scented bud of the morning—O,
When the windy grass went rippling far,
I saw my dear one walking slow
In the field where the daisies are.

We did not laugh and we did not speak
As we wandered happily to and fro;
I kissed my dear on either cheek
In the bud of the morning—O.

A lark sang up from the breezy land,
A lark sang down from a cloud afar,
And she and I went hand in hand
In the field where the daisies are.

Here are Ladies [1913]

One and One

Do you hate me, you !
Sitting quietly there,
With the burnished hair
That frames the two
Deep eyes of your face
In a smooth embrace ?

And you say naught,
And I never speak ;
But you rest your cheek
On your hand, a thought
Showing plain as the brow
Goes wrinkling now.

Of what do you think,
Sitting opposite me,
As you stir the tea
That you do not drink,
And frown at naught
With those brows of thought ?

Here are Ladies [1913]


Listen! If but women were
Half as kind as they are fair
There would be an end to all
Miseries that do appal.

Cloud and wind would fly together
In a dance of sunny weather,
And the happy trees would throw
Gifts to travellers below.

Then the lion, meek and mild,
With the lamb would, side by side,
Couch him friendly, and would be
Innocent of enmity.

Then the Frozen Pole would go,
Shaking off his fields of snow,
To a kinder clime, and dance
Warmly with the girls of France.

These; if women only were
Half as kind as they are fair.

Here are Ladies [1913]