Love

THE CHOICE

My love, belov’d, about your breast is bound,
A clinging silken scarf of crimson hue;
Red fold on fold it circles you around,
Yet yields to every breath and pulse of you.
Dear, will you draw it closer to your heart,
Or, careless, rend its fragile web apart?

Published, place unknown
2301 Regent Street, Madison, Wisconsin

TWO ROSES

O Rose of Love, rich petalled, flaunting, fair,
Too soon thou blossomest beside my way;
Large tasks have I, that need each moment’s care;
Swing yet a while, untouched, upon thy spray –
I cannot pluck thy crimson joy today.

O rose of Sorrow, ghostly, sad and wan,
Well comest thou, late met, to my lone sight;
My rose of love I plucked not – it is gone,
But here thou blow’st, mysterious and white,
I’ll wear thee on my empty heart tonight.

Chase’s Magazine p. 282
Date unknown
Illustrated by: George B. Hosletiter

THE WORTH OF LOVE

In youth, love seems so commonplace a thing,
So much is heaped within our listless hands,

That, prodigal, we think no shame to fling
Its wealth away upon the highway sands.

Not so in later years: Love – misers then –

So scant, so precious, seem those grains of gold –

We fain would tread our backward path again,
To glean the treasure we disdained of old . . .

Love!

Sunset Magazine p. 298 – January 19xx

FUTILITY

He thought her patient and serene,
Untroubled by the world’s desires,
A nun-like soul; yet all unseen,
Her breast was seared by raging fires.

Long time he lived his life apart,
Reluctant still to understand;
And when at last he sought her heart,
I fell a cinder in his hand.

15 Gramercy Park, New York City

FORGIVENESS

My love held out his arms to me;
He did not smile or speak,
But oh! His eyes were clear and fain,
Their message fair to seek;
And I remembered all at once
His lips upon my cheek.

But I had said him bitter words –
Too bitter to forgive;
The love, methought, would leave his heart
As water leaves a sieve;
It seemed no more could kisses be
While both of us should live.

All lost in wretchedness and wrath
I turned, nor hoped for rest –
He only held his kind arms out
To draw me to his breast;
He spoke not, but his eyes’ clear speech
Was easy to be guessed.

Light were his lips upon my cheek,
His eyes I could not see –
My own were hid; oh, short of heaven,
Could such forgiveness be,
As that I won when by dear love
Held out his arms to me?

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