19 August 2010

A Match

If love were what the rose is,
And I were like the leaf,
Our lives would grow together
In sad or singing weather,
Blown fields or flowerful closes,
Green pleasure or grey grief;
If love were what the rose is,
And I were like the leaf.

If I were what the words are,
And love were like the tune,
With double sound and single
Delight our lips would mingle,
With kisses glad as birds are
That get sweet rain at noon;
If I were what the words are,
And love were like the tune.

If you were life, my darling,
And I your love were death,
We'd shine and snow together
Ere March made sweet the weather
With daffodil and starling
And hours of fruitful breath;
If you were life, my darling,
And I your love were death.

If you were thrall to sorrow,
And I were page to joy,
We'd play for lives and seasons
With loving looks and treasons
And tears of night and morrow
And laughs of maid and boy;
If you were thrall to sorrow,
And I were page to joy.

If you were April's lady,
and I were lord in May,
We'd throw with leaves for hours
And draw for days with flowers,
Till day like night were shady
And night were bright like day;
If you were April's lady,
And I were lord in May.

If you were queen of pleasure,
And I were king of pain,
We'd hunt down love together,
Pluck out his flying-feather,
And teach his feet a measure,
And find his mouth a rein;
If you were queen of pleasure,
And I were king of pain.

-Algernon Charles Swinburne

3 comments:

Keeley said...

This poem is soooo beautiful.

Ritsumei said...

I agree. I got a volume of Victorian & later poetry at the last library sale (came to something like $.23 a book!) and it sits on my desk where I page through it from time to time, hoping some poetic goodness will rub off on me. When I found this poem, I left the book sitting open on my desk for more than a week, until I had time to blog it, because I was afraid if I closed the book I'd loose the poem. (Silly me. Isn't that sort of thing what bookmarks & stickytabs were invented for? Never even occurred to me.)

Keeley said...

If you'd closed the book with a bookmark, the evil poetry hating goblins would have moved the bookmark. You were wise to keep it open. =)

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