Some players upon plaintive strings
Publish their wistfulness abroad;
I have not spoken of these things,
Save to one man, and unto God.
- "The Precept of Silence"
- What comes now? The earth awaits
What fierce wonder from the skies?
Thunder, trampling through the night?
Morning, with illustrious eyes?
Morning, from the springs of light:
Thunder, round Heaven's opening gates..
The Age of a Dream (1890)
- Imageries of dreams reveal a gracious age:
Black armour, falling lace, and altar lights at morn.
The courtesy of saints, their gentleness and scorn,
Lights on an earth more fair, than shone from Plato's page:
The courtesy of knights, fair calm and sacred rage:
The courtesy of love, sorrow for love's sake borne.
Vanished, those high conceits! Desolate and forlorn,
We hunger against hope for the lost heritage.
- Now from the broken tower, what solemn bell still tolls,
Mourning what piteous death? Answer, O saddened souls!
Who mourn the death of beauty and the death of grace.
By the Statue of King Charles at Charing Cross (1895)
- Alone he rides, alone,
The fair and fatal king:
Dark night is all his own,
That strange and solemn thing.
- Which are more full of fate:
The stars; or those sad eyes?
Which are more still and great:
Those brows; or the dark skies?
- Vanquished in life, his death
By beauty made amends:
The passing of his breath
Won his defeated ends.
- Our wearier spirit faints,
Vexed in the world‘s employ:
His soul was of the saints;
And art to him was joy.
The Dark Angel (1895)
- Dark Angel, with thine aching lust
To rid the world of penitence:
Malicious Angel, who still dost
My soul such subtile violence!
- Thou art the whisper in the gloom,
The hinting tone, the haunting laugh:
Thou art the adorner of my tomb,
The minstrel of mine epitaph.
- Do what thou wilt, thou shalt not so,
Dark Angel! triumph over me:
Lonely, unto the Lone I go;
Divine, to the Divinity.