Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, PROVENCE, by GUSTAVE KAHN



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PROVENCE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Hers is a fine and buoyant face
Last Line: And of tall grass made tenderer.
Subject(s): Faces; Lips; Pain; Smiles; Suffering; Misery


HERS is a fine and buoyant face;
Yet the small features have a noble trace;
Her flesh's clear grace
Evokes no floral image of delight;
'Tis the flesh's grace, even as through space
The silver of star-light.

Broad is her brow,
White as the temple where but now
Has prayed a faithful worshipper;
Of deepest red the lips of her,
Not purple as the bauble of a king,
But like a bay whose savor has a sting,
A savor with a hint of pain
Which being gathered lives again,
Under our kisses lives again,
Symbol of all faint hope and longing vain.

Soft are her eyes seeing naught save
Seas of a silvery blue and gardens by the wave.
They keep a wide attentive air
Wounded by the music fair
Of sweet songs that rise and fall
In soft speech of that litoral,
Ardent and fragrant by the free
Divine Mediterranean sea.

And when she smiles,
There is clearness on the isles,
The far, white isles from which is borne
When awakens the fresh morn
Radiance of golden sheaves to her,
And of tall grass made tenderer.





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