Elizabeth Stoddard



I Love You, But A Sense Of Pain

by Elizabeth Stoddard

I love you, but a sense of pain
Is in my heart and in my brain;
Now, when your voice and eyes are kind,
May I reveal my complex mind?

Though I am yours, it is my curse
Some ideal passion to rehearse:
I dream of one that 's not like you,
Never of one that's half so true.

To quell these yearnings, vague and wild,
I often kneel by our dear child
In still, dark nights (you are asleep),
And hold his hands, and try to weep.

I cannot weep; I cannot pray --
Why grow so pale, and turn away?
Do you expect to hold me fast
By pretty legends in the past?

It is a woman's province, then,
To be content with what has been?
To wear the wreath of withered flowers,
That crowned her in the bridal hours?

Still, I am yours: this idle strife
Stirs but the surface of my life:
And if you would but ask once more,
How goes the heart? or at the door

Imploring stand, and knock again,
I might forget this sense of pain,
And down oblivion's sullen stream
Would float the memory of my dream!


Copyright 1895
Houghton, Mifflin And Company, Boston And New York
Link To This Page