Mary Elizabeth Coleridge Quotes
“The Other Side of a Mirror
I sat before my glass one day,
And conjured up a vision bare,
Unlike the aspects glad and gay,
That erst were found reflected there -
The vision of a woman, wild
With more than womanly despair.
Her hair stood back on either side
A face bereft of loveliness.
It had no envy now to hide
What once no man on earth could guess.
It formed the thorny aureole
Of hard, unsanctified distress.
Her lips were open - not a sound
Came though the parted lines of red,
Whate'er it was, the hideous wound
In silence and secret bled.
No sigh relieved her speechless woe,
She had no voice to speak her dread.
And in her lurid eyes there shone
The dying flame of life's desire,
Made mad because its hope was gone,
And kindled at the leaping fire
Of jealousy and fierce revenge,
And strength that could not change nor tire.
Shade of a shadow in the glass,
O set the crystal surface free!
Pass - as the fairer visions pass -
Nor ever more return, to be
The ghost of a distracted hour,
That heard me whisper: - 'I am she!”
“My True Love Hath My Heart and I Have His
None ever was in love with me but grief.
She wooed me from the day that I was born;
She stole my playthings first, the jealous thief,
And left me there forlorn.
The birds that in my garden would have sung,
She scared away with her unending moan;
She slew my lovers too when I was young,
And left me there alone.
Grief, I have cursed thee often—now at last
To hate thy name I am no longer free;
Caught in thy bony arms and prisoned fast,
I love no love but thee.”
“We Never Said Farewell
We never said farewell, nor even looked
Our last upon each other, for no sign
Was made when we the linkèd chain unhooked
And broke the level line.
And here we dwell together, side by side,
Our places fixed for life upon the chart.
Two islands that the roaring seas divide
Are not more far apart.”
Mary Elizabeth Coleridge
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