To Her Hair Poem by Lord Edward Herbert of Cherbury

To Her Hair

Black beamy hairs, which so seem to arise
From the extraction of those eyes,
That into you she destin-like doth spin
The beams she spares, what time her soul retires,
And by those hallowed fires,
Keeps house all night within.

Since from within her awful front you shine,
As threads of life which she doth twine,
And thence ascending with your fatal rays,
Do crown those temples, where Love's wonders wrought
We afterwards see brought
To vulgar light and praise.

Lighten through all your regions, till we find
The causes why we are grown blind,
That when we should your glories comprehend
Our sight recoils, and turneth back again,
And doth, as 'twere in vain,
Itself to you extend.

Is it because past black there is not found
A fixed or horizontal bound?
And so, as it doth terminate the white,
It may be said all colors to infold,
And in that kind to hold
Somewhat of infinite?

Or is it that the center of our sight
Being veiled in its proper night
Discerns your blackness by some other sense
Than that by which it doth pied colors see,
Which only therefore be
Known by their difference?

Tell us, when on her front in curls you lie
So diapred from that black eye.
That your reflected forms may make us know
That shining light in darkness all would find,
Were they not upward blind
With the sunbeams below.

tristan forward 31 July 2019

this might be the poem that edith sitwell alluded to in a famous television interview in 1959

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aslan 19 December 2019

I believe so. In fact, I came here right after listening to that interview.

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