Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE SECOND COVENANT, by WILLIAM ROSE BENET



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THE SECOND COVENANT, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: I dreamt that we were lying
Last Line: Was the love after death.
Subject(s): Love; Soul


I dreamt that we were lying
On a high hill afar,
Our deepest thoughts replying
To one lone star.
High from the vault of heaven
Its silver rays were shed;
And the deep peace between us
Was the peace of the dead.

Our busy lives were over,
Our day and night and day;
Of you and me, your lover,
Nought more to say;
And sorrows we had vanquished,
And blisses we had known,
And our cares and our kisses
To the four winds were blown.

The handclasp of contrition,
The eyesight of each
Where each had recognition,
Were passed, with our speech.
Vast night declared above us,
"Now sight and semblance fade,
No heart's emotion bindeth
A shadow to a shade."

Then within me, lying near you,
A dark sadness grew
That, to cherish or to cheer you,
There was nought left to do.
Of happy daily service
Nought now remained to me --
Of good news for you and comfort
As once it used to be.

No beauty save the spirit's
Abode wide heaven's scrolls;
No charm the flesh inherits,
No strength save the soul's;
As breath upon a mirror
All recognizing sign.
Yet nearer far and dearer
Your soul spoke to mine.

For viewed not of each other,
But closer side by side
Than child unto his mother,
Than husband to bride,
Thought unto thought you answered.
One prayer we seemed -- one breath;
And the deep love between us
Was the love after death.





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