James Whitcomb Riley

(7 October 1849 - 22 July 1916 / Greenfield, Indiana)

The Serenade


The midnight is not more bewildering
To her drowsed eyes, than to her ears, the sound
Of dim, sweet singing voices, interwound
With purl of flute and subtle twang of string,
Strained through the lattice, where the roses cling
And, with their fragrance, waft the notes around
Her haunted senses. Thirsting beyond bound
Of her slow-yielding dreams, the lilt and swing
Of the mysterious delirious tune,
She drains like some strange opiate, with awed eyes
Upraised against her casement, where aswoon,
The stars fail from her sight, and up the skies
Of alien azure rolls the full round moon
Like some vast bubble blown of summer noon.

Submitted: Friday, April 09, 2010

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