Mistinguette

He was my one and only love;
My world was mirror for his face.
We were as close as hand and glove,
Until he came with smiling grace
To say: 'We must be wise, my dear.
You are the idol of today,
But I too plan a proud career,--
Let's kiss and go our way.'

And then he soared to sudden fame,
And even queens applauded him.
A halo glorified his name
That dust of time may never dim.
And me,--I toured golden Brazil,
Yet as gay mobs were cheering me,
The sun seemed black, the brilliance chill,
My triumph mockery.

Today if I should say: 'Hello!'
He'd say: 'How are you?' I'd say: 'Fine.'
Yet never shall he see the woe,
The wanness of my frail decline.
I love him now and always will.
Oh may his star be long to set!
My Maurice is an idol still,--
What wreaths for Mistinguette!

by Robert William Service

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