A Young Girl

I search in vain your childlike face to see
The thoughts that hide behind the words you say;
I hear them singing, but close-shut from me
Dream the enchanted woods through which they stray.
Cheek, lip, and brow — I glance from each to each,
And watch that light-winged Mercury, your hand;
And sometimes when brief silence falls on speech
I seem your hidden self to understand.

Mine a dark fate. Behind his iron bars
The captive broods, with ear and heart astrain
For jangle of key, for glimpse of moon or stars,
Grey shaft of daybreak, sighing of the rain.
Life built these walls. Past all my dull surmise
Must burn the inward innocence of your eyes.
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