Saturday, July 18, 2015

Saturday Verse: "Bridal Veil" - Alice Cary

Fellow spinster Alice Cary keeping it real.

We're married, they say, and you think you have won me,—
Well, take this white veil from my head and look on me,
Here's matter to vex you, and a matter to grieve you,
Here's doubt to distrust you, and faith to believe you,—
I am all as you see, common earth, common dew;
Be wary and mould me to roses, not rue! 
Ah! shake out the filmy thing, fold after fold,
And see if you have me to keep and to hold,—
Look close on my heart—see the worst of its sinning,—
It is not yours to-day for the yesterday's winning—
The past is not mine—I am too proud to borrow—
You must grow to new heights if I love you to-morrow. 
I have wings flattened down and hid under my veil:
They are subtle as light—you can never undo them,
And swift in their flight—you can never pursue them,
And spite of all clasping, and spite of all bands,
I can slip like a shadow, a dream, from your hands. 
Nay, call me not cruel, and fear not to take me,
I am yours for my life-time, to be what you make me,—
To wear my white veil for a sign, or a cover,
As you shall be proven my lord, or my lover,
A cover for peace that is dead, or a token
Of bliss that can never be written or spoken.

- Alice Cary                                                                                     

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