Monday, October 23, 2017

LAMENT OF BRÜNHILDE, a poem

MIDST rejoicings I have wept,
And in hours when others slept,
     I have looked on Horror's face,
          In this place.
Now midst wailings I alone
     Hush the voice of mortal sorrow,
Gaze on thee, again mine own!—
     Fear no parting for the morrow.

For we meet, love, as before,
By a flame-encircled shore.
     Thou once more hast stemmed the tide,
          To thy bride;
And I wake at thy command
     From my agony of dreaming,
And thy ring is on my hand,
     And I feel its clasp redeeming!

Heart to heart again responds,
Death asunder rends my bonds,
     From long exile sets me free,—
          Gives me thee!
And submissive to his will,
     With a rapture that betrays not,
Siegfried, I embrace thee still,
     And the wrath of gods dismays not!

Ah, they pitied not my pain!
Merciless, they saw thee slain,—
     Smiling though the cruel dart
          Pierced my heart,—
But with glory none shall dim
     Thou hast passed the dreaded portal,
And I bless the will of Him
     Who, in anger, made me mortal!

I shall rest, when Odin, late,
Mourns forlorn Brünhilde's fate:
     Mourns her truth, dishonor made—
          Faith betrayed;
For the Nornen ne'er forget;
     In their awful hands they hold him,
And as my spent sun shall set;
     Glooms eternal shall infold him.

Changeless guardians who keep
Watch and ward, shall give me sleep,
     When hot tears—not mine—are shed
          For thee, my dead!
When thy foes in vain repent,
     Hopeless, for thy ruin languish,
When Valhalla's towers are rent
     In remembrance of my anguish!...

Godlike hero, thou and I
Loved as none should love who die!
     Dost thou call? Thy funeral pyre,
          Kindling higher,
Weds me to my destiny.
     Bridegroom! lover! last desire!
Thou who crossed the flames to me!—
     Swift to thee I mount through fire!
"Lament of Brünhilde" by Florence Earle Coates. Published in Poems (1898) and Poems (1916) Volume II.

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