LE PANNEAU

by Oscar Wilde

Under the rose-tree's dancing shade

There stands a little ivory girl,

Pulling the leaves of pink and pearl

With pale green nails of polished jade.

The red leaves fall upon the mould,

The white leaves flutter, one by one,

Down to a blue bowl where the sun,

Like a great dragon, writhes in gold.

The white leaves float upon the air,

The red leaves flutter idly down,

Some fall upon her yellow gown,

And some upon her raven hair.

She takes an amber lute and sings,

And as she sings a silver crane

Begins his scarlet neck to strain,

And flap his burnished metal wings.

She takes a lute of amber bright,

And from the thicket where he lies

Her lover, with his almond eyes,

Watches her movements in delight.

And now she gives a cry of fear,

And tiny tears begin to start:

A thorn has wounded with its dart

The pink-veined sea-shell of her ear.

And now she laughs a merry note:

There has fallen a petal of the rose

Just where the yellow satin shows

The blue-veined flower of her throat.

With pale green nails of polished jade,

Pulling the leaves of pink and pearl,

There stands a little ivory girl

Under the rose-tree's dancing shade.