Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, ON THE BALCONY, by PAUL VERLAINE

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

ON THE BALCONY, by             Poem Explanation     Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography
First Line: Both watched the uncertain swallows sudden farewell
Last Line: The tumbled, odorous bed, wide-opening in the gloom.
Subject(s): Flowers; Love; Romance; Roses

Both watched the uncertain swallows sudden farewell winging;
The one so pale, jet-haired, the other with a face
Of roses, and their loosened gowns of light old lace
About their sweetness, vague as summer clouds were clinging.

And both, with a languor of the wan asphodel,
While in the heavens lifted the moon's limp flower,
Tasted with thirsty lips the night's impassioned hour,
And the sad joy of faithful hearts that love too well.

Thus, clasped and supple, the pallid sky of beauty draining,
Mysterious-loving pair, all other loves disdaining,
Thus, on the balcony, hand hot in hand, they dreamed.

Behind them, deep in the rich shadows of the room,
Emphatic as the throne of a great drama, gleamed
The tumbled, odorous Bed, wide-opening in the gloom.

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