Dante Gabriel Rossetti

(12 May 1828 – 9 April 1882 / London / England)

The Kiss


What smouldering senses in death's sick delay
Or seizure of malign vicissitude
Can rob this body of honour, or denude
This soul of wedding-raiment worn to-day?
For lo! even now my lady's lips did play
With these my lips such consonant interlude
As laurelled Orpheus longed for when he wooed
The half-drawn hungering face with that last lay.

I was a child beneath her touch, -- a man
When breast to breast we clung, even I and she, --
A spirit when her spirit looked through me, --
A god when all our life-breath met to fan
Our life-blood, till love's emulous ardours ran,
Fire within fire, desire in deity.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

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