Menella Bute Smedley

One and Another

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They had been much together, and one for ever bears
A name upon the loyal heart, and in the daily prayers;
The other but remembers when the pleasant hours are past,
That something has been sending them so sweetly and so fast.
Through golden gates of converse they wander'd at their choice,
The soul of one was speaking—only the other's voice;
But grand or lovely was that voice, to suit the changing theme,
And the poor soul was satisfied in feeding on a dream.
Thus day by day the bond was knit, a strange delight to both;

One served in perfect freedom, unconscious of its growth,
The other stoop'd in pastime each lavish gift to greet,
For even upon a sleeper's lips the wine of love is sweet.
But the veil was lifted once, and the heart beheld its place,
And took it very calmly, too proud to sue for grace;—
No wrong—'twas but a blunder! no crime—'twas but a thought!
A small and secret tragedy; none knew that it was wrought.
And what remains? A useless link which cannot be undone;
A wealth of precious memories, though precious but to one;
The colour which slow sunsets leave, staining a breezeless sky
With records of past glory, though it only shone to die!

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Menella Bute Smedley