Poetry From Women
Saturday, October 19, 2013
By Louisa S. Guggenberger (1845–1895)
yet the sunlight caught it where it lay,
I saw a snow-flake vanish utterly;
I saw a blossom perish on the spray,
Ere yet its petals opened to the bee:
I heard a yearning dissonance to-day
Fail, ere it found its final harmony.
These, symbols: yet—O saddest, and O best
Of Nature’s unfulfilments!—one hath passed
Unscarred by any heart-strife to her rest
Who, scarcely fed, gave thanks for life’s repast,
And ere love’s first full throb had stirred her breast
Praised God for love, and smiling, smiled her last.
Well! well! such vanishings are breathings stilled
Ere yet they grew intense, and turned to sighs;
We curse the stern world-providence that willed
The light away from waking baby-eyes;
We sing the dirges of the Unfulfilled,
suffer; not the innocence that dies.
It dies at our, and not its own expense,
We loved it, for it was exceeding white;
Who knows?—strong draughts of utmost sentience
Had left it, fevered, in a lurid night!
Better a thousandfold that, lost to sense,
It lingers yet—the memory of a Light.
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Louisa S. Guggenberger
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