I have an idol wrought of stainless gold
Before whose feet I bow, in whose delight
I am content to live, whose spells of might
Are smiles that gleam, are tears that glisten cold
On the fair cheek that blushes if I praise;
Are warm ripe kisses in the softer hours
When love is perfect blossom of sweet flowers,
Are shadowed glances of pure lovelight rays
From clear blue eyes, are wonderful caresses
When love is golden autumn of sweet fruit.
What other worship can usurp my days
When I may lie amid her sunny tresses
Enraptured by the music of her lute
One long calm love, one heart's delight always?
Bright spheres of heaven, firefly gleams, fair ghosts
Laugh lightly to the silver globe of night
That glitters on green fields, and on the sea
Ripples break foamless, where the golden coasts
Echo their mellow cadence. Such delight
Is on me I would fain sigh into sleep
Until my love comes forth to dream with me
Of silent words of love and peopled stars
Where we may live and love and never weep
Nor yet be weary. The last ruby bars
Are sunk beneath the sea. The shadows creep
More on me as I quicken with desire
My love is all of gold, my faith is deep
Lit with my heart's imperishable fire.
Pale spectres of the stars, corpse-lights, bad-ghosts
Sicken the icy glamour of the moon
Upon the vacant earth; and where the sea
Marshals sepulchral billows, obscene hosts
Of harpies gibber weirdly. I should swoon
For the silence, rolled not some dread minstrelsy
In fearful anguish on the shuddering air,
Breathing out terror and lightning to the night
That widly echoes back Hell's venomous spite,
And shrieks aloud the watchword of despair
To draw each painracked nerve more tense and gray
For I am alone, unloved, in murk and gloom,
Unloved, unfriended, fittest for the tomb,
Who worshipped golden feet and found them clay.
She creeps alive upon the tawny sands,
False glittering woman, girt about with lies!
She steals toward me, the tigress sleek and fierce!
Destroying devil, with long sinuous hands
And hate triumphant in blue-murderous eyes!
I nerve myself to spring upon and pierce
With maddening fangs those firm white bosom towers,
To tear those lithe voluptuous limbs apart
And glut my ravening soul with vengeance. Heart
Quickens as she draws near; the scent of flowers
Breathes round her damned presence. Shall she live
To triumph with those tainted lips of song --
She whispered 'Dearest, I have kept thee long'.
I flung myself before her, 'Love, forgive!'