Sideways as on a dying bed,
And those pearls of dew she wears
Prove to be presaging tears
Which the sad morn had let fall
On her hast’ning funeral.
|—||Excerpt from “A Garden by the Sea” by William Morris|
O treacherous scent, O thorny sight,
O tangle of world’s wrong and right,
What art thou ’gainst my armour’s gleam
But dusky cobwebs of a dream?
Beat down, deep sunk from every gleam
Of hope, they lie and dully dream;
Men once, but men no more, that Love
Their waste defeated hearts should move.
Here sleeps the world that would not love!
Let it sleep on, but if He move
Their hearts in humble wise to wait
On his new-wakened fair estate.
O won at last is never late!
Thy silence was the voice of fate;
Thy still hands conquered in the strife;
Thine eyes were light; thy lips were life.
The fateful slumber floats and flows / About the tangle of the rose. / But lo the fated hand and heart / To rend the slumberous curse apart.
The threat of war the hope of peace / The Kingdoms peril and increase / Sleep on and bide the latter day / When fate shall take his chain away.
The maiden plaisance of the land / Knoweth no stir of voice or hand / No cup the sleeping waters fill / The restless shuttle lieth still.
Here lies the hoarded love the key / To All the treasure that shall be / Come fated heart the gift to take / And smite the sleeping world awake.
“The Legend of Briar Rose” paintings by Edward Burne-Jones, poem by William Morris.
|—||from “Hymn to Apollo” by Percy Bysshe Shelley|
“We have lingered in the chambers of the sea
By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown
‘Til human voices wake us… and we drown.”
― T.S. Eliot
|—||from “Prometheus Unbound” (Act I)|
Poet of Nature, thou hast wept to know
That things depart which never may return:
Childhood and youth, friendship, and love’s first glow,
Have fled like sweet dreams, leaving thee to mourn.
These common woes I feel. One loss is mine
Which thou too feel’st, yet I alone deplore.
Thou wert as a lone star whose light did shine
On some frail bark in winter’s midnight roar:
Thou hast like to a rock-built refuge stood
Above the blind and battling multitude:
In honoured poverty thy voice did weave
Songs consecrate to truth and liberty.
Deserting these, thou leavest me to grieve,
Thus having been, that thou shouldst cease to be.
- Percy Bysshe Shelley