Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, AVATAR, by BABETTE DEUTSCH

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

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AVATAR, by            
First Line: Yet I have loved these walls
Last Line: That was the loin-cloth of the galilean.
Alternate Author Name(s): Yarmolinsky, Avrahm, Mrs.
Subject(s): Love

Yet I have loved these walls --
grave with spaced etchings,
darkened by their books,
like stones that mellowing mosses climb --
have loved the furniture
cherished of time:
firm contours and old colours, with the flare
of russet bittersweet in a green bowl
and the black Persian shawl of my great-grandmother
flung, like her gracious shadow, on this chair.
Yes, I have loved
soft rugs, and softer flowers,
the silver and the cedarwood, the purple, the fine linen
that is ours.
I have loved things
more intimately known than men and women,
things that, beyond the feeble flesh, endure,
aged and fine, familiar and secure.
Yes, I have loved . . .
And now I stand reproved
by you, who want
for this bodily tenement
as temporal a house as some brief tent --
you, whose sole cedar grows on Lebanon,
shaking its awful banners like a paean,
you, whose sole purple is the dawn adored
above the desert,
you, whose sole linen
is the weave abhorred
that was the loin-cloth of the Galilean.

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