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- By ALGERNON CHARLES SIN-BURN
- STRANGE beauty, eight-limbed and eight-handed,
- Whence camest to dazzle our eyes?
- With thy bosom bespangled and banded
- With the hues of the seas and the skies;
- Is thy home European or Asian,
- O mystical monster marine?
- Part molluscous and partly crustacean,
- Betwixt and between.
- Wast thou born to the sound of sea trumpets,
- Hast thou eaten and drunk to excess
- Of the sponges--thy muffins and crumpets;
- Of the seaweed--thy mustard and cress?
- Wast thou nurtured in caverns of coral,
- Remote from reproof or restraint?
- Art thou innocent, art thou immoral,
- Sinburnian or Saint?
- Lithe limbs, curling free, as a creeper
- That creeps in a desolate place,
- To enroll and envelop the sleeper
- In a silent and stealthy embrace,
- Cruel beak craning forward to bite us,
- Our juices to drain and to drink,
- Or to whelm us in waves of Cocytus,
- Indelible ink!
- O breast, that 'twere rapture to writhe on!
- O arms, 'twere delicious to feel
- Clinging close with the crush of the Python,
- When she maketh her murderous meal!
- In thy eightfold embraces enfolden,
- Let our empty existence escape;
- Give us death that is glorious and golden,
- Crushed all out of shape!
- Ah! thy red lips, lascivious and luscious,
- With death in their amorous kiss,
- Cling round us, and clasp us, and crush us,
- With bitings of agonized bliss;
- We are sick with the poison of pleasure,
- Dispense us the potion of pain;
- Ope thy mouth to its uttermost measure
- And bite us again!
- Arthur Clement Hilton
Poets' Corner .
H O M E .