James Edwin Campbell

A Memory Tone

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She played,
And gleaming fingers touched the keys,
As if upon their souls she played,
While the mad desire grew fierce to seize
Them in the Bastile, swiftly made
Of my strong hands.


She played,
And o'er white shoulder flung a look
That almost drove me mad with pain;
My love ran toward her as the brook
When bank-brimmed o'er with April rain
Runs swift to sea.


She played --
A brook went purling o'er a stone,
Its rhythmic lip was dripping song;
Upon its bank I stood alone,
With brook and soul in concord strong,
And life so young.


She played --
The tinkling sheep-bells filled the glade,
A thrush's song was in the air;
The water elms threw speckled shade,
Wild flowers were blooming everywhere,
The while she played.


She ceased,
And while white arms were 'round my neck
And kisses on my lips were hot,
And love stood waiting at my beck,
I only know, I recked it naught --
Life seemed so old!

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James Edwin Campbell