Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE WANDERER: 3. IN ENGLAND: THE LAST TIME THAT I MET LADY RUTH, by EDWARD ROBERT BULWER-LYTTON



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THE WANDERER: 3. IN ENGLAND: THE LAST TIME THAT I MET LADY RUTH, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: There are some things hard to understand
Last Line: You see I can laugh. That is all.
Alternate Author Name(s): Meredith, Owen; Lytton, 1st Earl Of; Lytton, Robert
Subject(s): England; Travel; English; Journeys; Trips


THERE are some things hard to understand.
O help me, my God, to trust in thee!
But I never shall forget her soft white hand,
And her eyes when she looked at me.

It is hard to pray the very same prayer
Which once at our mother's knee we prayed --
When, where we trusted our whole heart, there
Our trust hath been betrayed.

I swear that the milk-white muslin so light
On her virgin breast, where it lay demure,
Seemed to be toucht to a purer white
By the touch of a breast so pure.

I deemed her the one thing undefiled
By the air we breathe, in a world of sin:
The truest, the tenderest, purest child
A man ever trusted in!

When she blamed me (she, with her fair child's face!)
That never with her to the Church I went
To partake of the Gospel of truth and grace,
And the Christian sacrament,

And I said I would go for her own sweet sake,
Though it was but herself I should worship there,
How that happy child's face strove to take
On its dimples a serious air!

I remember the chair she would set for me,
By the flowers, when all the house was gone
To drive in the Park, and I and she
Were left to be happy alone.

There she leaned her head on my knees, my Ruth,
With the primrose loose in her half-closed hands:
And I told her tales of my wandering youth
In the far fair foreign lands. --

The last time I met her was here in town,
At a fancy ball at the Duchess of D.,
On the stairs, where her husband was handing her down.
-- There we met, and she talked to me.

She, with powder in hair, and patch on chin,
And I, in the garb of a pilgrim Priest,
And between us both, without and within,
A hundred years at least!

We talked of the House, and the late long rains,
And the crush at the French Ambassador's ball,
And...well, I have not blown out my brains.
You see I can laugh. That is all.





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