Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE DEAD MISTRESS, by CHARLES BAUDELAIRE



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THE DEAD MISTRESS, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: When, o my dark beloved, thou shalt drowse
Last Line: The worm shall suck thy burning body pale.
Subject(s): Death; Unfaithfulness; Dead, The; Infidelity; Adultery; Inconstancy


WHEN, O my dark beloved, thou shalt drowse
Beneath black marble, and thy bed-chambér
Shall be deep-delvéd and thy pleasure-house
Some sodden cavern whence thou mayst not stir;
When thy head-stone shall so with weight oppress
Thy breast and supple thighs that it shall stay
Thy heart from beating and thy foot no less
From hasting down the old adventurous way,—
The grave that knows my inmost heart's desire
Shall thus, night-long, my deathless wish repeat:
"Thou who of thy sweet self didst baulk the buyer,
How should I spare thee now, adulterous cheat,
From Death's indignity?" Then woman, wail!
The worm shall suck thy burning body pale.





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