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The Collected Poems of Dora Sigerson Shorter/The Lone of Soul


The world has many lovers, but the one
She loves the best is he within whose heart
She but half-reigning queen and mistress is;
Whose lonely soul for ever stands apart,

Who from her face will ever turn away,
Who but half-hearing listens to her voice,
Whose heart beats to her passion, but whose soul
Within her presence never will rejoice.

What land has let the dreamer from its gates.
What face beloved hides from him away?
A dreamer outcast from some world of dreams,
He goes for ever lonely on his way.

The wedded body and the single soul.
Beside his mate he shall most mateless stand.
For ever to dream of that unseen face—
For ever to sigh for that enchanted land.

Like a great pine upon some Alpine height,
Tom by the winds and bent beneath the snow,
Half overthrown by icy avalanche.
The lone of soul throughout the world must go.

Alone among his kind he stands alone,
Tom by the passions of his own strange heart,
Stoned by continual wreckage of his dreams,
He in me crowd for ever is apart.

Like the great pine that, rocking no sweet nest,
Swings no young birds to sleep upon the bough.
But where the raven only comes to croak—
“There lives no man more desolate than thou!”

So goes the lone of soul amid the world—
No love upon his breast, with singing, cheers;
But Sorrow builds her home within his heart.
And, nesting there, will rear her brood of tears.