Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, FORGETFULNESS, by ANNA HEMPSTEAD BRANCH

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

FORGETFULNESS, by                 Poet's Biography
First Line: She was so recent. She had not yet learned
Last Line: And through the barren days remembered her.
Subject(s): Forgetfulness

SHE was so recent. She had not yet learned
The sweet observances that make their days
Beautiful to the angels. She went dim
Among their shining, and unoccupied
Wistfully watched their pastimes. Then came one
Who brought a fruit.
"Eat thou," the splendor said.
I will not eat," said she.
For in his eyes
She saw forgetfulness and was afraid.
Then to her love on earth an angel came.
We cannot heal her of her listlessness
Nor teach her the new ways, and memory
Grieves her with tears. She will not eat the fruit
That makes us wise and shows us to forget."
Dark is the road that leads to Heaven for one
Who is not dead. No angel goes with him.
Blind and with torn, vague feet and all alone
He came among them. Through the shining place
They saw him rush and saw the scarlet blood
Drip through the brightness. To his Love he came,
And, lifting in his haggard hands her cheek,
He kissed her on the mouth and showed the fruit
The Angel brought him -- terrible and sweet.
"Eat, Love," he said.
And she, that loved him, ate.
Then smiled at him with unremembering eyes,
And with her heavenly comrades turned away.
With bleeding feet back to the earth he came,
And through the barren days remembered her.

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