The Iceberg and Other Poems

by Charles G.D. Roberts


 

PAN AND THE ROSE


 

CAME Pan to the garden
On a golden morning,
With the dew of the thickets
Adrip on his thighs.
He thrust through the hollyhocks,
5
Stamped the bright marigolds,
And scanned pale Dianthe
With indifferent eyes.

But aloof in the garden
He spied one blossom,

10
A rose but half open
To the insistent sun,—
Her petals enclosing
The dew of young ecstasy,
The perilous perfume
15
Of life just begun.

His hot heart pounding
In his shaggy bosom,
The tender red petals
To his lips he drew.

20

With aching rapture
And a wild, wild wonder,
He drained the distillage
Of that honeyed dew.

               *      *      *      *      *      *

And ever thereafter

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He needs must wander,
Piping his lone plaint
Beside the shadowy stream,—
Nor heeds the enticing
Of white nymphs in the copses,—
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His heart tormented,
And his parched lips thirsting
For the draught that assuages them
No longer save in dream.