Together and Lost

together in time
time on a string—
friendship in notes
of what lovers bring
 
          *
 
storms and fires
eons of woods
grown over and lost
to sight in the blind
communion of one
 
          *
 
rust and battle—
armor left, foregone
on fields for others
to follow this road
 
          *
 
alone
in the constant quest
of folly foregone
in others’ arms
 
          *
 
one day crowned
anew without a plan—
maps torn and paper burned,

Two Blind Men

Two blind men met. Said one: "This earth
Has been a blackout from my birth.
Through darkness I have groped my way,
Forlorn, unknowing night from day.
But you - though War destroyed your sight,
Still have your memories of Light,
And to allay your present pain
Can live your golden youth again."

Then said the second: "Aye, it's true,
It must seem magical to you
To know the shape of things that are,
A women's lips, a rose, a star.
But therein lies the hell of it;
Better my eyes had never lit

Two Nights

(Suggested by the lives of Napoleon and Josephine.)

I.

ONE night was full of rapture and delight-
Of reunited arms and swooning kisses,
And all the unnamed and unnumbered blisses
Which fond souls find in love of love at night.

Heart beat with heart, and each clung into each
With twining arms that did but loose their hold
To cling still closer; and fond glances told
These truths for which there is no uttered speech.

There was sweet laughter and endearing words,

Troth with the Dead

The moon is broken in twain, and half a moon
Before me lies on the still, pale floor of the sky;
The other half of the broken coin of troth
Is buried away in the dark, where the still dead lie.
They buried her half in the grave when they laid her away;
I had pushed it gently in among the thick of her hair
Where it gathered towards the plait, on that very last day;
And like a moon in secret it is shining there.

My half shines in the sky, for a general sign
Of the troth with the dead I pledged myself to keep;

Tomorrow

Lord, what am I, that with unceasing care
Thou did'st seek after me, that Thou did'st wait
Wet with unhealthy dews before my gate,
And pass the gloomy nights of winter there?
Oh, strange delusion, that I did not greet
Thy blest approach, and oh, to heaven how lost
If my ingratitude's unkindly frost
Has chilled the bleeding wounds upon Thy feet.

How oft my guardian angel gently cried,
“Soul, from thy casement look, and thou shalt see
How He persists to knock and wait for thee!”

Tz'u No. 11

To the tune of "Lamentation"

It was far into the night when, intoxicated,
I took off my ornaments;
The plum flower withered in my hair.

Recovered from tipsiness,
the lingering smell of wine
broke my fond dream
before my dreaming soul could find
my way home.

All is quiet.
The moon lingers,
And the emerald screen hangs low.
I caress the withered flower,
Fondle the fragrant petals,
Trying to bring back the lost time.

Two Sons

I HAVE two sons, wife—
Two, and yet the same;
One his wild way runs, wife,
Bringing us to shame.
The one is bearded, sunburnt, grim, and fights across the sea,
The other is a little child who sits upon your knee.

One is fierce and cold, wife,
As the wayward deep;
Him no arms could hold, wife,
Him no breast could keep.
He has tried our hearts for many a year, not broken them; for he
Is still the sinless little one that sits upon your knee.

Two Or Three A Recipe To Make A Cuckold

Two or three visits, and two or three bows,
Two or three civil things, two or three vows,
Two or three kisses, with two or three sighs,
Two or three Jesus's - and let me dies-
Two or three squeezes, and two or three towses,
With two or three thousand pound lost at their houses,
Can never fail cuckolding two or three spouses.

Transformation

She waited in a rose-hued room;
A wanton-hearted creature she,
But beautiful and bright to see
As some great orchid just in bloom.
Upon wide cushions stretched at ease
She lolled in garments filmy fine,
Which but enhanced each rounded line;
A living picture, framed to please.

A bold electric eye of light
Leered through its ruddy screen of lace
And feasted on her form and face
As some wine-crimsoned roue might.

From wall and niche, nude nymph beguiled
Fair goddess of world-wide fame,

Twas such a littlelittle boat

107

'Twas such a little—little boat
That toddled down the bay!
'Twas such a gallant—gallant sea
That beckoned it away!

'Twas such a greedy, greedy wave
That licked it from the Coast—
Nor ever guessed the stately sails
My little craft was lost!

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