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ONE word is too often profaned
For me to profane it,
For thee to disdain it.
For prudence to smother, And pity from thee more dear
Than that from another.
I can give not what men call love,
But wilt thou accept not The worship the heart lifts above
And the Heavens reject not, The desire of the moth for the star,
Of the night for the morrow, The devotion to something afar
From the sphere of our sorrow?
WHEN passion's trance is overpast,
It were enough to feel, to see,
After the slumber of the year
WILD, pale, and wonder-stricken, even as one
And so she moved under the bridal veil, Which made the paleness of her cheek more pale, And deepened the faint crimson of her mouth, And darkened her dark locks, as moonlight doth, And of the gold and jewels glittering there She scarce felt conscious, — but the weary glare Lay like a chaos of unwelcome light, Vexing the sense with gorgeous undelight.
A moonbeam in the shadow of a cloud
The bride-maidens who round her thronging came, Some with a sense of self-rebuke and shame, Envying the unenviable; and others Making the joy which should have been another's Their own by gentle sympathy; and some Sighing to think of an unhappy home : Some few admiring what can ever lure Maidens to leave the heaven serene and pure Of parents' smiles for life's great cheat; a thing Bitter to taste, sweet in imagining.
But they are all dispersed — and, lo ! she stands Looking in idle grief on her white hands, Alone within the garden now her own; And through the sunny air, with jangling tone, The music of the merry marriage bells, Killing the azure silence, sinks and swells ;Absorbed like one within a dream who dreams That he is dreaming, until slumber seems