Henry Kendall

(18 April 1839 – 1 August 1882 / Ulladulla, New South Wales)

A Spanish Love Song


From Andalusian gardens
I bring the rose and rue,
And leaves of subtle odour,
To weave a gift for you.
You’ll know the reason wherefore
The sad is with the sweet;
My flowers may lie, as I would,
A carpet for your feet!
The heart—the heart is constant;
It holds its secret, Dear!
But often in the night time
I keep awake for fear.
I have no hope to whisper,
I have no prayer to send,
God save you from such passion!
God help you from such end!

You first, you last, you false love!
In dreams your lips I kiss,
And thus I greet your Shadow,
“Take this, and this, and this!”
When dews are on the casement,
And winds are in the pine,
I have you close beside me—
In sleep your mouth is mine.

I never see you elsewhere;
You never think of me;
But fired with fever for you
Content I am to be.
You will not turn, my Darling,
Nor answer when I call;
But yours are soul are body
And love of mine and all!

You splendid Spaniard! Listen—
My passion leaps to flame
For neck and cheek and dimple,
And cunning shades of shame!
I tell you, I would gladly
Give Hell myself to keep,
To cling to, half a moment,
The lips I taste in sleep.

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004

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