Richard Le Gallienne

(1866-1947 / England)

A Face In A Book - Poem by Richard Le Gallienne

In an old book I found her face
Writ by a dead man long ago-
I found, and then I lost the place;
So nothing but her face I know,
And her soft name writ fair below.

Even if she lived I cannot learn,
Or but a dead man's dream she were;
Page after yellow page I turn,
But cannot come again to her,
Although I know she must be there.

On other books of other men,
Far in the night, year-long, I pore,
Hoping to find her face again,
Too fair a face to see no more-
And 'twas so soft a name she bore.

Sometimes I think the book was Youth,
And the dead man that wrote it I,
The face was Beauty, the name Truth-
And thus, with an unseeing eye,
I pass the long-sought image by.


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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, April 14, 2010



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