Poetry Explorer

Classic and Contemporary Poetry

SAPPHO, by                     Poet's Biography
First Line: How could a water hyacinth
Last Line: Is a mist of dust?
Subject(s): Hyacinths; Sappho (610-580 B.c.)

How could a water hyacinth
Burn with a red moon's red?
How could an orchid's heirless kiss
Hold ones forever undead?

How could a blue lobelia's song
Stay blue as the sky,
Blue light on the hill of tone,
With centuries in full cry?

How could a body pink and proud
Headland a great gross planet
Till every drowsy sigh she breathed
Stands stiff as granite?

How could a love that woke to sleep
Again, as all loves must,
Alter not till the last heart's stone
Is a mist of dust?

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