He loved a lady with heaving breath,
Red lips, and a smile alway;
And her sighs an odour inhabiteth,
All of the rose-hued may;
But the warm bright lady was false as death,
And the ghost is true as day.
And the spirit-face, with its woe divine,
Came back in the hour of sighs;
As to men who have lost their aim, and pine,
Old faces of childhood rise:
He wept for her pleading voice, and the shine
Of her solitary eyes.
And now he believed in the ghost all night,
And believed in the day as well;
And he vowed, with a sorrowing tearful might,
All she asked, whate’er befel,
If she came to his room, in her garment white,
Once more at the midnight knell.
She came not. He sought her in churchyards old
That lay along the sea;
And in many a church, when the midnight tolled,
And the moon shone wondrously;
And down to the crypts he crept, grown bold;
But he waited in vain: ah me!
And he pined and sighed for love so sore,
That he looked as he were lost;
And he prayed her pardon more and more,
As one who had sinned the most;
Till, fading at length, away he wore,
And he was himself a ghost.
But if he found the lady then,
The lady sadly lost,
Or she had found ’mongst living men
A love that was a host,
I know not, till I drop my pen,
And am myself a ghost.
is only just
To laud good wine:
If I sit in the dust,
So sits the vine.”
Abu Midjan sang, as he sat in chains,
For the blood of the grape was the juice of his veins.
The prophet had said, “O Faithful, drink not”—
Abu Midjan drank till his heart was hot;
Yea, he sang a song in praise of wine,
And called it good names, a joy divine.
And Saad assailed him with words of blame,
And left him in irons, a fettered flame;
But he sang of the wine as he sat in chains,
For the blood of the grape ran fast in his veins.
will not think
That the Prophet said,
Ye shall not drink
Of the flowing red.
some weakling head,
In its after pain,
Drink not again.
I will dare,
With a goodly drought,
To drink and not spare,
Till my thirst be out.
as I quaff
The liquor cool,
I do not laugh,
Like a Christian fool;
my bosom fills,
And my faith is high;
Through the emerald hills
Goes my lightning eye.
see them hearken,
I see them wait;
Their light eyes darken
The diamond gate.