A wagging finger, without sound to speak,
That hard-sought stare which hastily did crash
Into the ground, a cliff upon its brink.
The Duchess mutt’ring ghostly sighs and rash
Contentions all amidst herself. Did dash
I quickly to her side, oblivious,
And met her swinging sidelong in a thrash,
Her scamper t’ward the safer earth in fuss,
Yet could I of her dread undress, extract, discuss?
The crashing sea beyond the ridge: despair;
My eldest thoughts to congregate beside,
But ere then, silence, formed a tower’s stair
That reached not merely down the cliff’s fierce tide,
A stony spiral, lightless to the eye,
But tore its way into abysmal route.
“A path to dungeons barren, black to bide,”
The interjected finger pointed ’bout,
“A place to live henceforth; my ominous redoubt!
“A bastion built one league beneath the quilt
Of waves, here petulant–your trespass hurts
My dignity, you waif! For as I wilt,
I must descend, as water’s strength, inert,
Rebounds to sea from soil’s loud overt
Derision for unwelcome tenant, I,
The stranger of inimical concert
Will also quit this thankless earth awry.”
But ire’s clout was stripped by tears’ betraying cry.
A man, most wise, once wrote veracity:
Of those despising all the world’s designs,
Devices scorned as plague and spoiled wine,
That love anew could, birthed of soul, succeed.
“A fabled flash of splendor’s resting deed,
Of eyes which earth does weep to sight enshrine
To osculate that incandescent shine–
I plead earth’s cause, a moment’s sigh, impede!
“And also for my own long-winded course,
Which ends this moment, fascination’s cusp,
The time when I abandon never must
This wilting face beset with true remorse.
Disown that place of darkness, for robust,
My hand of friendship; reap its eager source!”
No, never had I seen an aspect pass
Before by such unstable avenues
As if a jigsaw fully solved recast
Itself into a thousand pieces loosed,
All hope and recollection, forfeit brewed,
Entirety solution altered so.
Yet if not for eye’s resolute debut,
Then I would form from satin hand bestowed
Conclusion of her single thought’s riposte, “Let’s go!”