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Alice Meynell (Элис Мейнелл)

The Two Shakespeare Tercentenaries

     OF BIRTH, 1864; OF DEATH, 1916

               TO SHAKESPEARE

            Longer than thine, than thine,
Is now my time of life; and thus thy years
Seem to be clasped and harboured within mine.
O how ignoble this my clasp appears!

            Thy unprophetic birth,
Thy darkling death; living I might have seen
That cradle, marked those labours, closed that earth.
O first, O last, O infinite between!

            Now that my life has shared
Thy dedicated date, O mortal, twice,
To what all-vain embrace shall be compared
My lean enclosure of thy paradise:

            To ignorant arms that fold
A poet to a foolish breast? The Line,
That is not, with the world within its hold?
So, days with days, my days encompass thine.

            Child, Stripling, Man—the sod.
Might I talk little language to thee, pore
On thy last silence? O thou city of God,
My waste lies after thee, and lies before.

Alice Meynell's other poems:
  1. The Roaring Frost
  2. To O——, of Her Dark Eyes
  3. In Sleep
  4. Free Will
  5. Singers to Come

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