To Alcithoë

IN your dim Greece of old, Alcithoë,
Death like a lover sought and crowned you young,
Between the olive orchards and the sea.

When they had twined your myrtle-buds, and hung
The stately cypress at your door, they said,
'Alcithoë is dead,
Before whose feet the flaming crocus sprung,
For whom the red rose opened ere the prime;
Those the gods love are taken before their time.'–

Ah! why did no one, watching you alone,
Snare your dead beauty in undying stone ?
The gold hair bound beneath its golden band,
The milk-white poppies closed within your hand;
That the harsh world a little space might keep
The last, still, exquisite vision of your sleep.

by Marjorie Lowry Christie Pickthall

Other poems of PICKTHALL (82)

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