Wilfred Owen

(1893-1918 / Shropshire / England)

Spells and Incantations


A vague pearl, a wan pearl
You showed me once; I peered through far-gone winters
Until my mind was fog-bound in that gem.

Blue diamonds, cold diamonds
You shook before me, so that out of them
Glittered and glowed vast diamond dawns of spring.

Tiger-eyed rubies, wrathful rubies
You rolled. I watched their hot hearts fling
Flames from each glaring summer of my life.

Quiet amber, mellow amber
You lifted; and behold the whole air rife
With evening, and the auburn autumn cloud.

But pale skin, your pearl skin
Show this to me, and I shall have surprise
Of every snow-lit dawn before it break.

But clear eyes, your fresh eyes
Open; that I may laugh, and lightly take
All air of early April in one hour.

But brown curls, O shadow me with curls,
Full of September mist, half-gleam, half-glower,
And I shall roam warm nights in lands far south.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

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