Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, A CAMEO, by ALGERNON CHARLES SWINBURNE



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A CAMEO, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: There was a graven image of desire
Last Line: Upon whose lock was written peradventure.
Subject(s): Death; Desire; Idols; Pain; Dead, The; Suffering; Misery


THERE was a graven image of Desire
Painted with red blood on a ground of gold
Passing between the young men and the old,
And by him Pain, whose body shone like fire,
And Pleasure with gaunt hands that grasped their hire.
Of his left wrist, with fingers clenched and cold,
The insatiable Satiety kept hold,
Walking with feet unshod that pashed the mire,
The senses and the sorrows and the sins,
And the strange loves that suck the breasts of Hate
Till lips and teeth bite in their sharp indenture,
Followed like beasts with flap of wings and fins. [grate,
Death stood aloof behind a gaping
Upon whose lock was written Peradventure.





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