From "Vashti"

Lascelles Abercrombie 1881 (Ashton upon Mersey) – 1938 (London)

WHAT thing shall be held up to woman's beauty?   
Where are the bounds of it? Yea, what is all   
The world, but an awning scaffolded amid   
The waste perilous Eternity, to lodge   
This Heaven-wander'd princess, woman's beauty?           
The East and West kneel down to thee, the North   
And South; and all for thee their shoulders bear   
The load of fourfold space. As yellow morn   
Runs on the slippery waves of the spread sea,   
Thy feet are on the griefs and joys of men     
That sheen to be thy causey. Out of tears   
Indeed, and blitheness, murder and lust and love,   
Whatever has been passionate in clay,   
Thy flesh was tempered. Behold in thy body   
The yearnings of all men measured and told,     
Insatiate endless agonies of desire   
Given thy flesh, the meaning of thy shape!   
What beauty is there, but thou makest it?   
How is earth good to look on, woods and fields,   
The season's garden, and the courageous hills,     
All this green raft of earth moored in the seas?   
The manner of the sun to ride the air,   
The stars God has imagined for the night?   
What's this behind them, that we cannot near,   
Secret still on the point of being blabbed,     
The ghost in the world that flies from being named?   
Where do they get their beauty from, all these?   
They do but glaze a lantern lit for man,   
And woman's beauty is the flame therein.

Font size:
Collection  PDF     

Submitted on May 13, 2011

Modified on March 05, 2023

1:13 min read

Quick analysis:

Closest metre Iambic pentameter
Characters 1,361
Words 240
Stanzas 1
Stanza Lengths 29

Lascelles Abercrombie

Lascelles Abercrombie was a British poet and literary critic, one of the "Dymock poets". more…

All Lascelles Abercrombie poems | Lascelles Abercrombie Books

0 fans

Discuss the poem "From "Vashti"" with the community...



    Find a translation for this poem in other languages:

    Select another language:

    • - Select -
    • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
    • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
    • Español (Spanish)
    • Esperanto (Esperanto)
    • 日本語 (Japanese)
    • Português (Portuguese)
    • Deutsch (German)
    • العربية (Arabic)
    • Français (French)
    • Русский (Russian)
    • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
    • 한국어 (Korean)
    • עברית (Hebrew)
    • Gaeilge (Irish)
    • Українська (Ukrainian)
    • اردو (Urdu)
    • Magyar (Hungarian)
    • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
    • Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Italiano (Italian)
    • தமிழ் (Tamil)
    • Türkçe (Turkish)
    • తెలుగు (Telugu)
    • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
    • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
    • Čeština (Czech)
    • Polski (Polish)
    • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Românește (Romanian)
    • Nederlands (Dutch)
    • Ελληνικά (Greek)
    • Latinum (Latin)
    • Svenska (Swedish)
    • Dansk (Danish)
    • Suomi (Finnish)
    • فارسی (Persian)
    • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
    • հայերեն (Armenian)
    • Norsk (Norwegian)
    • English (English)


    Use the citation below to add this poem to your bibliography:


    "From "Vashti"" STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 3 Mar. 2024. <"vashti">.

    Become a member!

    Join our community of poets and poetry lovers to share your work and offer feedback and encouragement to writers all over the world!

    March 2024

    Poetry Contest

    Join our monthly contest for an opportunity to win cash prizes and attain global acclaim for your talent.



    Are you a poetry master?

    How many syllables an Iambic Pentameter line must have?
    • A. 10
    • B. 12
    • C. 3
    • D. 20