“Is love a light for me? A steady light,
A lamp within whose pallid pool I dream
Over old love-books? Or is it a gleam,
A lantern coming towards me from afar
Down a dark mountain? Is my love a star?
Ah me!- so high above so coldly bright!
The fire dances. Is my love a fire
Leaping down the twilight muddy and bold?
Nay, I’d be frightened of him. I’m too cold
For quick and eager loving. There’s a gold
Sheen on these flower petals as they fold
More truly mine, more like to my desire.
The flower petals fold. They are by the sun
Forgotten. In a shadowy wood they grow
Where the dark trees keep up a to-and-fro
Shadowy waving. Who will watch them shine
When I have dreamed my dream? Ah, darling mine,
Find them, gather them for me one by one.”
By Katherine Mansfield