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Perdita

Rolf Boldrewood 1826 (London) – 1915 (Melbourne)

She is beautiful yet, with her wondrous hair
  And eyes that are stormy with fitful light,
The delicate hues of brow and cheek
  Are unmarred all, rose-clear and bright;
That matchless frame yet holds at bay
The crouching bloodhounds, Remorse, Decay.

There is no fear in her great dark eyes --
  No hope, no love, no care,
Stately and proud she looks around
  With a fierce, defiant stare;
Wild words deform her reckless speech,
Her laugh has a sadness tears never reach.

Whom should she fear on earth? Can Fate
  One direr torment lend
To her few little years of glitter and gloom
  With the sad old story to end
When the spectres of Loneliness, Want and Pain
Shall arise one night with Death in their train?

I see in a vision a woman like her
  Trip down an orchard slope,
With rosy prattlers that shout a name
  In tones of rapture and hope;
While the yeoman, gazing at children and wife,
Thanks God for the pride and joy of his life.

Whose conscience is heavy with this dark guilt?
  Who pays at the final day
For a wasted body, a murdered soul,
  And how shall he answer, I say,
For her outlawed years, her early doom,
And despair -- despair -- beyond the tomb?

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Rolf Boldrewood

Thomas Alexander Browne was an Australian author who published many of his works under the pseudonym Rolf Boldrewood. He is best known for his 1882 bushranging novel Robbery Under Arms. more…

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    "Perdita" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 27 Feb. 2021. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/32997/perdita>.

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