Helen, thy beauty is to me Like those Nicean barks of yore, That gently, o'er a perfumed sea, The weary, way-worn wanderer bore To his own native shore. On desperate seas long wont to roam, Thy hyacinth hair, thy classic face, Thy Naiad airs have brought me home To the glory that was Greece. And the grandeur that was Rome. Lo! in yon brilliant window-niche How statue-like I see thee stand! The agate lamp within thy hand, Ah! Psyche from the regions which Are Holy Land!
Edgar Allan Poe - 1809-1849
I Beneath the vine-clad eaves, Whose shadows fall before Thy lowly cottage door Under the lilac’s tremulous leaves— Within thy snowy claspeed hand The purple flowers it bore.. Last eve in dreams, I saw thee stand, Like queenly nymphs from Fairy-land— Enchantress of the flowery wand, Most beauteous Isadore! II And when I bade the dream Upon thy spirit flee, Thy violet eyes to me Upturned, did overflowing seem With the deep, untold delight Of Love’s serenity; Thy classic brow, like lilies white And pale as the Imperial Night Upon her throne, with stars bedight, Enthralled my soul to thee! III Ah I ever I behold Thy dreamy, passionate eyes, Blue as the languid skies Hung with the sunset’s fringe of gold; Now strangely clear thine image grows, And olden memories Are startled from their long repose Like shadows on the silent snows When suddenly the night-wind blows Where quiet moonlight ties. IV Like music heard in dreams, Like strains of harps unknown, Of birds forever flown Audible as the voice of streams That murmur in some leafy dell, I hear thy gentlest tone, And Silence cometh with her spell Like that which on my tongue doth dwell, When tremulous in dreams I tell My love to thee alone! V In every valley heard, Floating from tree to tree, Less beautiful to, me, The music of the radiant bird, Than artless accents such as thine Whose echoes never flee! Ah! how for thy sweet voice I pine:— For uttered in thy tones benign (Enchantress!) this rude name of mine Doth seem a melody!