Salopia Inhospitalis

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TOUCH not that maid:  
She is a flower, and changeth but to fade.  
Fragrant is she, and fair  
As any shape that haunts this lower air;  
In form as graceful and as free
As honeysuckles and the lilies be;  
Insensible, and shrinking from caress  
As flowers, which you peril when you press.  
Gaze not on her;  
She is a being of another sphere.
Brilliant is she, and bright  
As any star illuminate at night;  
Of stuff as sober and as fine  
As hers whose glory through the moon doth shine;  
Unliker to come down to this thy love
Than any orb that ’s fixed for aye above.  
Heed her no more:  
She is a gem whose heart thou canst not bore;  
Glistering is she, and grand  
As any stone that decks a monarch’s hand;
In face as free from flaw or stain  
As diamond from mine, or pearl from main:  
But she thy fire and fever never felt,  
For adamant can neither waste nor melt.

© Douglas Brooke Wheelton Sladen