by Laurence Hope
Who was it held that Love was soothing or sweet?
Mine is a painful fire, at its whitest heat.
Who said that Beauty was ever a gentle joy?
Thine is a sword that flashes but to destroy.
Though mine eyes rose up from thy Beauty's banquet, calm and refreshed,
My lips, that were granted naught, can find no rest.
My soul was linked with thine, through speech and silent hours,
As the sound of two soft flutes combined, or the scent of sister flowers.
But the body, that wretched slave of the Sultan, Mind,
Who follows his master ever, but far behind,
Nothing was granted him, and every rebellious cell
Rises up with angry protest, "It is not well!
Night is falling; thou hast departed; I am alone;
And the Last Sweetness of Love thou hast not given--I have not known!"
Somewhere, Oh, My Beloved One, the house is standing,
Waiting for thee and me; for our first caresses.
It may be a river-boat, or a wave-washed landing,
The shade of a tree in the jungle's dim recesses,
Some far-off mountain tent, ill-pitched and lonely,
Or the naked vault of the purple heavens only.
But the Place is waiting there; till the Hour shall show it,
And our footsteps, following Fate, find it and know it.
Where we shall worship the greatest of all the Gods in his pomp and power,--
I sometimes think that I shall not care to survive that hour!
Last updated January 14, 2019