The New Proserpine

WHERE, countless as the stars of night,
The daisies made a milky way
Across fresh lawns, and flecked with light,
Old Ilex groves walled round with bay,--

I saw thee stoop, oh lady sweet,
And with those pale, frail hands of thine
Gather the spring flowers at our feet,
Fair as some late-born Proserpine.

Yea, gathering flowers, thou might'st have been
That goddess of the ethereal brow,
Revisiting this radiant scene
From realm of dolorous shades below.

Thou might'st have been that Queen of Sighs,
Love-bound by Hades' dreadful spell;
For veiled within thy heaven-blue eyes,
There lay the Memory of Hell.
Villa Pamfili Doria.

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