Come, white moon, to baby and me;
Gently glide o’er the ocean of sleep,
Silver the waves of its shadowy deep:
Sleep, child, and the whitest of dreams to thee.
Husband, to-day could you and I behold
The sun that brought us to our bridal morn
Rising so splendid in the winter sky
(We thought fair spring returned), when we were wed;
Could the shades vanish from these fifteen years,
Which stand like columns guarding the approach
To that great temple of the double soul
That is as one—would you turn back, my dear,
And, for the sake of Love’s mysterious dream,
As old as Adam and as sweet as Eve,
Take me, as I took you, and once more go
Towards that goal which none of us have reached?
Contesting battles which but prove a loss,
The victor vanquished by the wounded one;
Teaching each other sacrifice of self,
True immolation to the marriage bond;
Learning the joys of birth, the woe of death,
Leaving in chaos all the hopes of life—
Heart-broken, yet with courage pressing on
For fame and fortune, artists needing both?
Or, would you rather—I will acquiesce—
Since we must choose what is, and are grown gray,
Stay in life’s desert, watch our setting sun,
Calm as those statues in Egyptian sands,
Hand clasping hand, with patience and with peace,
Wait for a future which contains no past?
THE HUSBAND SPEAKS.
Dearest, though I have sung a many songs,
Yet have I never sung one from my heart,
Save to thee only—and such private songs
Are as the silent, secret kiss of Love!
My heart, I say, so sacred was, and is,
I kept, I keep it, from all eyes but thine,
Because it is no longer mine, but thine,
Given thee forever, when I gave myself
That winter morning—was it years ago?
To me it seems the dream of yesterday!
You have not lost the face I married then,
Albeit a trifle paler—not to-night—
Nor I the eyes that saw then, and see still,
What every man should see in her he weds!
I wander ... wisely, let me, since my words
Conceal what none but you and I should know,—
The love I bear you, who have been, and are
Strong in the strength and weakness of your sex—
Queen of my household, mistress of my heart,
My children’s mother, and my always friend;
In one word, Sweet, sweetest of all words—Wife!
“One morn I left him in his bed.”
One morn I left him in his bed;
A moment after some one said,
“Your child is dying—he is dead.”
We made him ready for his rest,
Flowers in his hair, and on his breast
His little hands together prest.
We sailed by night across the sea;
So, floating from the world were we,
Apart from sympathy, we Three.