Set ope all shutters, that the day come in
Like a sea or a din!
Let not a nook of useless shade compel
Thoughts of the night, or tell
The mind's comparing that some things are sad,
For this day all are glad!
'Tis morn, 'tis open morn, the full sun is
Risen from out the abyss
Where last night lay beyond the unseen rim
Of the horizon dim.
Now is the brideawaking. Lo! she starts
To feel the day is home
Whose too-near night will put two different hearts
To beat as near as flesh can let them come.
Guess how she joys in her feared going, nor opes
Her eyes for fear of fearing at her joy.
Now is the pained arrival of all hopes.
With the half-thought she scarce knows how to toy.
Oh, let her wait a moment or a day
And prepare for the fray
For whichher thoughts not ever quite prepare!
With the real day's arrival she's half wroth.
Though she wish what she wants, she yet doth stay.
Her dreams yet merged are
In the slow verge of sleep, which idly doth
The accurate hope of things remotely mar.
Part from the windows the small curtains set
Sight more than light to omit!
Look on the general fields, how bright they lie
Under the broad bluesky,
Cloudless, and the beginning of the heat
Does the sight half ill-treat!
The bride hath wakened. Lo! she feels her shaking
Heart better all her waking!
Her breasts are with fear's coldness inward clutched
And more felt on her grown,
That will by hands other than hers be touched
And will find lips sucking their budded crown.
Lo! the thought of the bridegroom's hands alreadyFeels her about where even her hands are shy,
And her thoughts shrink till they become unready
She gathers up her body and still doth lie.
She vaguely lets her eyes feel opening.
In a fringed mist each thing
Looms, and the present day is truly clear
But to her sense of fear.
Like a hue, light lies on her lidded sight,
And she half hates theinevitable light.
Open the windows and the doors all wide
Lest aught of night abide
Or, like a ship's trail in the sea, survive
What made it there to live!
She lies in bed half waiting that her wish
Grow bolder or more rich
To make her rise, or poorer, to oust fear,
And she rise as a common day were here.
That she would be a bride in bed with man
The parts where she is woman do insist
Andsend up messages that shame doth ban
From being dreamed but in a shapeless mist.
She opes her eyes, the ceiling sees above
Shutting the small alcove,
And thinks, till she must shut her eyes again, Another ceiling she this night will know,
Another house, another bed, she lain
In a way she half guesses; so
She shuts her eyes tosee not the room she
Soon will no longer see.
Let the wide light come through the whole house now
Like a herald with brow
Garlanded round with roses and those leaves
That love for its love weaves!
Between her and the ceiling this day's ending
A man's weight will be bending.
Lo! with the thought her legs she twines, well knowing
A hand will part them then;
Fearing that entering in her, thatallowing
That will make softness begin rude at pain.
If ye, glad sunbeams, are inhabited
By sprites or gnomes that dally with the day
Whisper her, if she shrink that she'll be bled,
That love's large bower is doored in this small way.
Now will her grave of untorn maidenhood
Be dug in her small blood.
Assemble ye at that glad funeral
And weave her scarlet pall,
O pinings for the flesh ofman that often
Did her secret hours soften
And take her willing and unwilling hand
Where pleasure starteth up.
Come forth, ye moted gnomes, unruly band,
That come so quick ye spill your brimming cup;
Ye that make youth young and flesh nice
And the glad spring and summer sun arise;
Ye by whose secret the trees grow
Green, and the flowers bud, and birds sing free,
When with the fury of...