Last Songs from Vagabondia

by Bliss Carman and Richard Hovey


 

JAPANESE LOVE-SONG


 

HOW you start away!
—As a flame starts from a gust.
Flame-heart o’ the dust!
Sudden startle of dismay!
Swift triumph in distrust!
5

Flash and tremble of escape,
Fierce with desire!
Rippled water shot with fire
Wary of the rape
Of the eyes that sire!
10

Radiant no-and-yes!
Deer-flight and panther-thirst!
Blest and accurst!
Sword-splendour past the guess
Of Heaven’s best and Hell’s worst!
15

So you sprang up from yourself,
Burnt to supremacies,
Star-demoned by a kiss—
Night turned fire-elf,—
Wonder and all amiss!
20