Poems eBook

Denis Florence MacCarthy
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 281 pages of information about Poems.

Ethna, to cull sweet flowers divinely fair,
  To seek for gems of such transparent light
  As would not be unworthy to unite
Round thy fair brow, and through thy dark-brown hair,
I would that I had wings to cleave the air,
  In search of some far region of delight,
  That back to thee from that adventurous flight,
A glorious wreath my happy hands might bear;
  Soon would the sweetest Persian rose be thine—­
Soon would the glory of Golconda’s mine
Flash on thy forehead, like a star—­ah! me,
  In place of these, I bring, with trembling hand,
These fading wild flowers from our native land—­
  These simple pebbles from the Irish Sea!

108.  This sonnet to the poet’s wife was prefixed as a dedication to his first volume of poems.



The blue-eyed maidens of the sea
With trembling haste approach the lee,
So small and smooth, they seem to be
Not waves, but children of the waves,
And as each link`ed circle laves
The crescent marge of creek and bay,
Their mingled voices all repeat—­
  O lovely May!  O long’d-for May! 
We come to bathe thy snow-white feet.

We bring thee treasures rich and rare,
White pearl to deck thy golden hair,
And coral beads, so smoothly fair
And free from every flaw or speck;
That they may lie upon thy neck,
This sweetest day—­this brightest day
That ever on the green world shone—­
  O lovely May, O long’d-for May! 
As if thy neck and thee were one.

We bring thee from our distant home
Robes of the pure white-woven foam,
And many a pure, transparent comb,
Formed of the shells the tortoise plaits,
By Babelmandeb’s coral-straits;
And amber vases, with inlay
Of roseate pearl time never dims—­
  O lovely May!  O longed-for May! 
Wherein to lave thine ivory limbs.

We bring, as sandals for thy feet,
Beam-broidered waves, like those that greet,
With green and golden chrysolite,
The setting sun’s departing beams,
When all the western water seems
Like emeralds melted by his ray,
So softly bright, so gently warm—­
  O lovely May!  O long’d-for May! 
That thou canst trust thy tender form.

And lo! the ladies of the hill,
The rippling stream, and sparkling rill,
With rival speed, and like good will,
Come, bearing down the mountain’s side
The liquid crystals of the tide,
In vitreous vessels clear as they,
And cry, from each worn, winding path: 
  O lovely May!  O long’d-for May! 
We come to lead thee to the bath.

And we have fashioned, for thy sake,
Mirrors more bright than art could make—­
The silvery-sheeted mountain lake
Hangs in its carv`ed frame of rocks,
Wherein to dress thy dripping locks,
Or bind the dewy curls that stray
Thy trembling breast meandering down—­
  O lovely May!  O long’d-for May! 
Within their self-woven crown.

Project Gutenberg
Poems from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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