Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE DESERTED SHRINE, by GLADYS CROMWELL

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

THE DESERTED SHRINE, by                 Poet's Biography
First Line: I was the temple for a people's need
Last Line: Of love that on forsaken hearts abide.
Subject(s): Churches; Decay; Ruins; Shrines; Temples; Cathedrals; Rot; Decadence; Mosques

I WAS the temple for a people's need;
My columns and my towers lifted bright,
Expressed the soaring ardours of their creed.
My windows were the lanterns of their night;
My naves were golden solitudes for prayer;
My sepulchres enveloped those asleep;
And I concealed the living soul's despair,
In vestibules with pious love replete.

Through severed arch, the mournful wind I hear,
And my lone pillars that will never hold
Aught but the dome of heaven, stand darkly bold,
Like the bare crags, that from ebb tides appear.
The mellow, sheathing shadows droop to hide
My sadness, and the voices hushed of birds,
Lull my deep slumber, throbbing, like the words
Of love that on forsaken hearts abide.

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