Young Love



I cannot heed the words they say,
The lights grow far away and dim,
Amid the laughing men and maids
My eyes unbidden seek for him.

I hope that when he smiles at me
He does not guess my joy and pain,
For if he did, he is too kind
To ever look my way again.


I have a secret in my heart
No ears have ever heard,
And still it sings there day by day
Most like a caged bird.

And when it beats against the bars,
I do not set it free,
For I am happier to know
It only sings for me.


I wrote his name along the beach,
I love the letters so.
Far up it seemed and out of reach,
For still the tide was low.

But oh, the sea came creeping up,
And washed the name away,
And on the sand where it had been
A bit of sea-grass lay.

A bit of sea-grass on the sand,
Dropped from a mermaid's hair,
Ah, had she come to kiss his name
And leave a token there?


What am I that he should love me,
He who stands so far above me,
What am I?
I am like a cowslip turning
Toward the sky,
Where a planet's golden burning
Breaks the cowslip's heart with yearning,
What am I that he should love me,
What am I?


O dreams that flock about my sleep,
I pray you bring my love to me,
And let me think I hear his voice
Again ring free.

And if you care to please me well,
And live to-morrow in my mind,
Let him who was so cold before,
To-night seem kind.


I plucked a daisy in the fields,
And there beneath the sun
I let its silver petals fall
One after one.

I said, "He loves me, loves me not,"
And oh, my heart beat fast,
The flower was kind, it let me say
"He loves me," last.

I kissed the little leafless stem,
But oh, my poor heart knew
The words the flower had said to me,
They were not true.


I sent my love a letter,
And if he loves me not,
He shall not find my love for him
In any line or dot.

But if he loves me truly,
He'll find it hidden deep,
As dawn gleams red thro' chilly clouds
To eyes awaked from sleep.


The world is cold and gray and wet,
And I am heavy-hearted, yet
When I am home and look to see
The place my letters wait for me,
If I should find one letter there,
I think I should not greatly care
If it were rainy or were fair,
For all the world would suddenly
Seem like a festival to me.


I hid three words within my heart,
That longed to fly to him,
At dawn they woke me with a start,
They sang till day was dim.

And now at last I let them fly,
As little birds should do,
And he will know the first is "I",
The others "Love" and "You".


Across the twilight's violet
His curtained window glimmers gold;
Oh happy light that round my love
Can fold.

Oh happy book within his hand,
Oh happy page he glorifies,
Oh happy little word beneath
His eyes.

But oh, thrice happy, happy I
Who love him more than songs can tell,
For in the heaven of his heart
I dwell.


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