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To the same sweet air and tremble deeper down,

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And slip at once all-fragrant into one.

Less prosperously the second suit obtain'd

At first with Psyche. Not tho’ Blanche had sworn
That after that dark night among the fields,

She needs must wed him for her own good name;

Not tho' he built upon the babe restored ;
Nor tho' she liked him, yielded she, but fear'd

To incense the Head once more ; till on a day

When Cyril pleaded, Ida came behind
Seen but of Psyche : on her foot she hung

A moment and she heard, at which her face

A little flush'd and she past on; but each

Assumed from thence a half-consent involved

In stillness, plighted troth, and were at peace.

Nor only these : Love in the sacred halls

Held carnival at will, and flying struck

With showers of random sweet on maid and man.

Nor did her father cease to press my claim,

Nor did mine own now reconciled ; nor yet

Did those twin brothers, risen again and whole ;
Nor Arac, satiate with his victory.

But I lay still, and with me oft she sat : Then came a change ; for sometimes I would catch Her hand in wild delirium, gripe it hard, And fling it like a viper off, and shriek

• You are not Ida ;' clasp it once again

And call her Ida, tho' I knew her not,

And call her sweet, as if in irony,

And call her hard and cold which seem'd a truth :

And still she fear'd that I should lose

my

mind,

And often she believed that I should die :

Till out of long frustration of her care,
And pensive tendance in the all-weary noons,

And watches in the dead, the dark, when clocks

Throbb'd thunder thro' the palace floors, or call'd On flying Time from all their silver tongues-

And out of memories of her kindlier days,

And sidelong glances at my father's grief,
And at the happy lovers heart in heart-
And out of hauntings of my spoken love,
And lonely listenings to my mutter'd dream,

And often feeling of the helpless hands,

And wordless broodings on the wasted cheek

From all a closer interest flourish'd

up,

Tenderness touch by touch, and last, to these,
Love, like an Alpine harebell hung with tears
By some cold morning glacier ; frail at first
And feeble, all unconscious of itself,

But such as gather'd colour day by day.

Last I woke sane, but well-nigh close to death For weakness : it was evening : silent light Slept on the painted walls, wherein were wrought Two grand designs ; for on one side arose The women up in wild revolt, and storm’d

At the Oppian law. Titanic shapes, they cramm'd

The forum, and half-crush'd among the rest

A dwarflike Cato cower’d.

On the other side

Hortensia spoke against the tax; behind,

A train of dames : by axe and eagle sat,
With all their foreheads drawn in Roman scowls,

And half the wolf's-milk curdled in their veins,

The fierce triumvirs ; and before them paused

Hortensia, pleading : angry was her face.

I saw the forms: I knew not where I was :

Strange phantoms conjured out of circumstance,
Ghosts of the fading brain, they seem'd ; nor more
Sweet Ida : palm to palm she sat: the dew
Dwelt in her eyes, and softer all her shape
And rounder show'd : I moved : I sigh’d: a touch

Came round my wrist, and tears upon my hand :
Then all for languor and self-pity ran

Mine down my face, and with what life I had,
And like a flower that cannot all unfold,

So drench'd it is with tempest, to the sun,

Yet, as it may, turns toward him, I on her

Fixt my faint eyes, and utter'd whisperingly :

• If you be, what I think you, some sweet dream,
I would but ask you to fulfil yourself :
But if you be that Ida whom I knew,
I ask you nothing : only, if a dream,
Sweet dream, be perfect. I shall die to-night.
Stoop down and seem to kiss me ere I die.'

I could no more, but lay like one in trance, That hears his burial talk'd of by his friends, And cannot speak, nor move, nor make one sign, But lies and dreads his doom. She turn'd; she paused; She stoop'd ; and out of languor leapt a cry ; Leapt fiery Passion from the brinks of death ; My spirit closed with Ida's at the lips;

Till back I fell, and from mine arms she rose

Glowing all over noble shame ; and all

Her falser self slipt from her like a robe,

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