Close to her white flesh housed an hour,
One held you... her spent form
Drew on yours for its wasted dower—
What favour could she do you more?
Yet, of all who drink therein,
None know it is the warm
Odorous heart of a ravished flower
Tingles so in her mouth’s red core...
The ore in the crucible is pungent, smelling like
It is dusky red, like the ebb of poppies,
And purple, like the blood of elderberries.
Surely it is a strong wine—juice distilled of the fierce iron.
I am drunk of its fumes.
I feel its fiery flux
Working some strange alchemy...
So that I turn aside from the goodly board,
So that I look askance upon the common cup,
And from the mouths of crucibles
Suck forth the acrid sap.
Tender and tremulous green of leaves
Turned up by the wind,
Twanging among the vines—
Wind in the grass
Blowing a clear path
For the new-stripped soul to pass...
The naked soul in the sunlight...
Like a wisp of smoke in the sunlight
On the hill-side shimmering.
Dance light on the wind, little soul,
Like a thistle-down floating
Over the butterflies
And the lumbering bees...
Come away from that tree
And its shadow grey as a stone...
Bathe in the pools of light
On the hillside shimmering—
Shining and wetted and warm in the sun-spray falling like golden rain—
But do not linger and look
At that bleak thing under the tree.
I watched a star fall like a great pearl into the sea,
Till my ego expanding encompassed sea and star,
Containing both as in a trembling cup.
Censored lies that mimic truth...
Censored truth as pale as fear...
My heart is like a rousing bell—
And but the dead to hear...
My heart is like a mother bird,
Circling ever higher,
And the nest-tree rimmed about
By a forest fire...
My heart is like a lover foiled
By a broken stair—
They are fighting to-night in Sackville Street,
And I am not there!