Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, YLETTE AND YVONNE, by WILSON PUGSLEY MACDONALD



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YLETTE AND YVONNE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Ylette was born the same day as yvonne
Last Line: Knew there are earthly joys an angel misses.
Subject(s): Twins


Ylette and Yvonne were twins who dwelt in a cottage near Cadboro Beach, Victoria, British
Columbia. What one would do the other always would do; if one wept the other wept, if one
laughed the other laughed. I often talked to them as they played on the shore, and one day
Ylette, who had dug a deep hole in the sand, remarked that she was digging the hole to free a
lover who was imprisoned there.

YLETTE was born the same day as Yvonne;
And one is with us still and one is gone --
And which one was the lovelier none could say,
For each was lovely in her own sweet way.
And some would say Yvonne was fair and yet
Less lovely than Ylette.
And some would say Ylette was fair but shone
Less clearly in her beauty than Yvonne.

My garden was the place
That seemed to suit their grace;
And, if my bushes missed a rose, I knew
Two roses less
Would there unfold their flaming loveliness --
For it was true
What one would do the other maid would do.
And both at work and play
What one would say the other maid would say:
And no one ever saw them walk apart,
For each was keeper of the other's heart.

Along the sands I've traced their footsteps four
Like dimples on the shore,
And found each youthful gypsy with her hand
Plunged in a well of sand,
And watched them dig with ardor that they might
Free some imprisoned lover from his plight;
For every hidden place where they would look
Was filled with faces from some fairy-book.

And so the saying grew:
"What one will do the other maid will do."
And it was sweet to see
The kinship of their movement's artistry,
And, in this age when comradeship is rare,
To hear their steps go rhyming up the stair.

One day Yvonne brushed down
A treasured plant for which I knew renown,
And in the sudden moment of my wrath
I drove her from my path.
And as she went with eyes and spirit wet
I saw the dear Ylette
Run to her side and weep as though her heart
Had all been torn apart:
And then I learned the hasty words I'd sown
Had hurt two buds far lovelier than my own.

But God, who knew this saying to be true,
"What one will do the other maid will do,"
Foresaw that hour and its attendant pain
When both should love and one should love in vain --
And, fearing for the sorrow of that day,
He took Yvonne away.

To-night there was a storm,
But, snug and warm,
In folds of down was wrapped Ylette's fair form --
And as she slept
Her mother crept
And kissed her lips and eyes and hair, and wept;
And, in her sleep, the child
Reached out her arms and smiled.

"What one will do the other maid will do":
And it was true
Yvonne reached out her arms in Heaven too,
And hearing, in the depths below, those kisses,
Knew there are earthly joys an angel misses.





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