ELIZABETH SIDDAL; The Woeful Victory
It is evening.
I almost recognized you; who are you
Your mouth is stuffed with poppy hair;
Fate lies coiled between your breasts
Like a snake. But
Your tongue’s torn out.
You are the echo of my thoughts.
(I am the motionless cradle.)
Your flesh takes fire from my setting sun.
Will you free me, O Lady of the Sundial?
My eyes are growing dim.
(Perfect love’s not found this side of heaven.)
I shall paint you vermilion
Butcher nightingales and use their tongues for brushes
Melt you foil & verdigris
to the tune of Canterbury bells.
Stay awhile, Fair one.
I almost thought you spoke.
(I am the face rising from the pool
to drag the drinker deep.)
I am not whole, dear lady.
I am not myself.
Who are You?
(I am thyself. What hast thou done to me?)