My bleeding hearts drip stuff muddy in comparison. Heigh-ho! See my little
pecking dove? I'm in love with my own temple. Only that halo's wrong.
The colour's too strong, or not strong enough. I don't know. My eyes
are tired. Oh, Peter, don't be so rough; it is valuable. I won't do
any more. I promise. You tyrannise, Dear, that's enough. Now sit down
and amuse me while I rest."
The shadows of the geraniums creep over the floor, and begin to climb
the opposite wall.
Peter watches her, fluid with fatigue, floating, and drifting,
and undulant in the orange glow. His senses flow towards her,
where she lies supine and dreaming. Seeming drowned in a golden halo.
The pungent smell of the geraniums is hard to bear.
He pushes against her knees, and brushes his lips across her languid hands.
His lips are hot and speechless. He woos her, quivering, and the room
is filled with shadows, for the sun has set. But she only understands
the ways of a needle through delicate stuffs, and the shock of one colour
on another. She does not see that this is the same, and querulously murmurs
"Peter, I don't want it. I am tired."
And he, the undesired, burns and is consumed.
There is a crescent moon on the rim of the sky.
"Go home, now, Peter. To-night is full moon. I must be alone."
"How soon the moon is full again! Annette, let me stay. Indeed, Dear Love,
I shall not go away. My God, but you keep me starved! You write
`No Entrance Here', over all the doors. Is it not strange, my Dear,
that loving, yet you deny me entrance everywhere. Would marriage
strike you blind, or, hating bonds as you do, why should I be denied
the rights of loving if I leave you free? You want the whole of me,
you pick my brains to rest you, but you give me not one heart-beat.
Oh, forgive me, Sweet! I suffer in my loving, and you know it. I cannot
feed my life on being a poet. Let me stay."
"As you please, poor Peter, but it will hurt me if you do. It will
crush your heart and squeeze the love out."
He answered gruffly, "I know what I'm about."
"Only remember one thing from to-night. My work is taxing and I must
have sight! I _must_!"
The clear moon looks in between the geraniums. On the wall,
the shadow of the man is divided from the shadow of the woman
by a silver thread.
They are eyes, hundreds of eyes, round like marbles! Unwinking, for there
are no lids. Blue, black, gray, and hazel, and the irises are cased
in the whites, and they glitter and spark under the moon. The basket
is heaped with human eyes. She cracks off the whites and throws them away.
They ricochet upon the roof, and get into the gutters, and bounce
over the edge and disappear. But she is here, quietly sittingDownload<<BackPagesMainNext>>