For A Picture Of St. Dorothea

by Gerard Manley Hopkins

I bear a basket lined with grass;
I am so light, I am so fair,
That men must wonder as I pass
And at the basket that I bear,
Where in a newly-drawn green litter
Sweet flowers I carry, -- sweets for bitter.

Lilies I shew you, lilies none,
None in Caesar's gardens blow, --
And a quince in hand, -- not one
Is set upon your boughs below;
Not set, because their buds not spring;
Spring not, 'cause world is wintering.

But these were found in the East and South
Where Winter is the clime forgot. --
The dewdrop on the larkspur's mouth
O should it then be quenchèd not?
In starry water-meads they drew
These drops: which be they? stars or dew?

Had she a quince in hand? Yet gaze:
Rather it is the sizing moon.
Lo, linkèd heavens with milky ways!
That was her larkspur row. -- So soon?
Sphered so fast, sweet soul? -- We see
Nor fruit, nor flowers, nor Dorothy.





Last updated May 02, 2015