To A Greek Girl

written by

« Reload image

WITH breath of thyme and bees that hum,  
Across the years you seem to come,—  
 Across the years with nymph-like head,  
 And wind-blown brows unfilleted;  
A girlish shape that slips the bud  
 In lines of unspoiled symmetry;  
A girlish shape that stirs the blood  
 With pulse of Spring, Autonoe!  

Where’er you pass,—where’er you go,  
I hear the pebbly rillet flow;
 Where’er you go,—where’er you pass,  
 There comes a gladness on the grass;  
You bring blithe airs where’er you tread,—  
 Blithe airs that blow from down and sea;  
You wake in me a Pan not dead,—
 Not wholly dead!—Autonoe!  

How sweet with you on some green sod  
To wreathe the rustic garden-god;  
 How sweet beneath the chestnut’s shade  
 With you to weave a basket-braid;
To watch across the stricken chords  
 Your rosy-twinkling fingers flee;  
To woo you in soft woodland words,  
 With woodland pipe, Autonoe!  

In vain,—in vain! The years divide:
Where Thames rolls a murky tide,  
 I sit and fill my painful reams,  
 And see you only in my dreams;—  
A vision, like Alcestis, brought  
 From under-lands of Memory,—
A dream of Form in days of Thought,—  
 A dream,—a dream, Autonoe!

© Henry Austin Dobson