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THE FARMER'S BRIDE 11 FAME 13 THE NARROW DOOR 14 THE F?TE 15 BESIDE THE BED 20 IN NUNHEAD CEMETERY 21 THE PEDLAR 24 P?CHERESSE 25 THE CHANGELING 27 KEN 29 ? QUOI BON DIRE 32 THE QUIET HOUSE 33 ON THE ASYLUM ROAD 36 JOUR DES MORTS 37 THE FOREST ROAD 38 MADELEINE IN CHURCH 40 EXSPECTO RESURRECTIONEM 47 ON THE ROAD TO THE SEA 48 THE SUNLIT HOUSE 50 THE SHADE-CATCHERS 51 LE SACR?-COEUR 52 SONG 53 SATURDAY MARKET 54 ARRACOMBE WOOD 55 SEA LOVE 56 THE ROAD TO K?RITY 57 I HAVE BEEN THROUGH THE GATES 58 THE CENOTAPH 59
THE FARMER'S BRIDE
Three Summers since I chose a maid, Too young maybe--but more's to do At harvest-time than bide and woo. When us was wed she turned afraid Of love and me and all things human; Like the shut of a winter's day. Her smile went out, and 'twasn't a woman-- More like a little frightened fay. One night, in the Fall, she runned away.
"Out 'mong the sheep, her be," they said, 'Should properly have been abed; But sure enough she wasn't there Lying awake with her wide brown stare. So over seven-acre field and up-along across the down We chased her, flying like a hare Before our lanterns. To Church-Town All in a shiver and a scare We caught her, fetched her home at last And turned the key upon her, fast.
Shy as a leveret, swift as he, Straight and slight as a young larch tree, Sweet as the first wild violets, she, To her wild self. But what to me? The short days shorten and the oaks are brown, The blue smoke rises to the low grey sky, One leaf in the still air falls slowly down, A magpie's spotted feathers lie On the black earth spread white with rime, The berries redden up to Christmas-time. What's Christmas-time without there be Some other in the house than we!
She sleeps up in the attic there Alone, poor maid. 'Tis but a stair Betwixt us. Oh! my God! the down, The soft young down of her, the brown, The brown of her--her eyes, her hair, her hair!
Sometimes in the over-heated house, but not for long, Smirking and speaking rather loud, I see myself among the crowd, Where no one fits the singer to his song, Or sifts the unpainted from the painted faces Of the people who are always on my stair; They were not with me when I walked in heavenly places; But could I spare In the blind Earth's great silences and spaces, The din, the scuffle, the long stare If I went back and it was not there? Back to the old known things that are the new, The folded glory of the gorse, the sweet-briar air, To the larks that cannot praise us, knowing nothing of what we do And the divine, wise trees that do not care Yet, to leave Fame, still with such eyes and that bright hair! God! If I might! And before I go hence Take in her stead To our tossed bed, One little dream, no matter how small, how wild. Just now, I think I found it in a field, under a fence-- A frail, dead, new-born lamb, ghostly and pitiful and white. A blot upon the night, The moon's dropped child!
THE NARROW DOOR
The narrow door, the narrow door On the three steps of which the caf? children play Mostly at shop with pebbles from the shore, It is always shut this narrow door But open for a little while to-day.
And round it, each with pebbles in his hand, A silenced crowd the caf? children stand To see the long box jerking down the bend Of twisted stair; then set on end, Quite filling up the narrow door Till it comes out and does not go in any more.
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