The Great War

from War: an Ode And Other Poems, an electronic edition

Wedding Ode

To A Poetess

LIKE swans on an enchanted lake

Your dreamy days have drifted by;

Now, lovely, dreamy Lady wake,

A Glory lightens in the sky!

The empyrean dome above

Is burning, blinding sapphire blue;

Your misty morning dream of love

Is now a dream come true.


We two have wandered hand in hand

In merry moonlit fairyland;

We two have culled Parnassus thyme

Above the clouds on peaks sublime;

But far more bright

Than fairy-light

This love that dawns upon your eyes,

And higher than Parnassus height

The summit of your Paradise.

No dream is this--this orb of fire,

This splendid peak of white Desire.


Your dream of Love takes human form,

And human heart, and human speech,

And runs to you, alive and warm,

With hands your living hands can reach;

And every other dream grows dim,

He hath such light and life in him.


Yet mid the glory flicker gleams

Of other dreams

Of olden days;

And misty things

With rainbow wings

Still dance adown your sunlit ways;

Love's living heart, so warm and deep,

A million million dreams can keep,

And all fair dreams you ever knew

Still from Love's eyes may smile to you.


O be a poet-dreamer still,

With heart and will

Athrob, athrill,

├ćolian harps in Beauty's breath,

Until at last God's Love fulfil

All dreams of Life in the dream of Death,

Still dream; still let thy spirit change,

Like light and shadow on the sea!

Still keep existence fresh and strange

With Wonder and with Mystery.