Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Nov. 5, 1850 - Oct. 30, 1919


Love's Language

by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

How does Love speak?
In the faint flush upon the telltale cheek,
And in the pallor that succeeds it; by
The quivering lid of an averted eye --
The smile that proves the parent to a sigh --
Thus doth Love speak.

How does Love speak?
By the uneven heart-throbs, and the freak
Of bounding pulses that stand still and ache,
While new emotions, like strange barges, make
Along vein-channels their disturbing course;
Still as the dawn, and with the dawn's swift force --
Thus doth Love speak.

How does Love speak?
In the avoidance of that which we seek --
The sudden silence and reserve when near --
The eye that glistens with an unshed tear --
The joy that seems the counterpart of fear,
As the alarmed heart leaps in the breast,
And knows and names and greets its godlike guest --
Thus doth Love speak.

How does Love speak?
In the proud spirit suddenly grown meek --
The haughty heart grown humble; in the tender
And unnamed light that floods the world with splendour;
In the resemblance which the fond eyes trace
In all fair things to one beloved face;
In the shy touch of hands that thrill and tremble;
In looks and lips that can no more dissemble --
Thus doth Love speak.

How does Love speak?
In the wild words that uttered seem so weak
They shrink ashamed to silence; in the fire
Glance strikes with glance, swift flashing high and higher
Like lightnings that precede the mighty storm;
In the deep, soulful stillness; in the warm,
Impassioned tide that sweeps through throbbing veins,
Between the shores of keen delights and pains;
In the embrace where madness melts in bliss,
And in the convulsive rapture of a kiss --
Thus doth Love speak.


Poems of Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Copyright 1910
W.P. Nimmo, Hay, and Mitchell, Edinburgh

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