Dream-Love – Dante Gabriel Rossetti

Young Love lies sleeping 

In May-time of the year, 

Among the lilies, 

Lapped in the tender light: 

White lambs come grazing, 

White doves come building there: 

And round about him 

The May-bushes are white. 
Soft moss the pillow 

For oh, a softer cheek; 

Broad leaves cast shadow 

Upon the heavy eyes: 

There wind and waters 

Grow lulled and scarcely speak; 

There twilight lingers 

The longest in the skies. 
Young Love lies dreaming; 

But who shall tell the dream? 

A perfect sunlight 

On rustling forest tips; 

Or perfect moonlight 

Upon a rippling stream; 

Or perfect silence, 

Or song of cherished lips. 
Burn odours round him 

To fill the drowsy air; 

Weave silent dances 

Around him to and fro; 

For oh, in waking 

The sights are no so fair, 

And song and silence 

Are not like these below. 
Young Love lies dreaming 

Till summer days are gone, – 

Dreaming and drowsing 

Away to perfect sleep: 

He sees the beauty 

Sun hath not looked upon, 

And tastes the fountain 

Unutterably deep. 
Him perfect music 

Doth hush unto his rest, 

And through the pauses 

The perfect silence calms: 

Oh, poor the voices 

Of earth from east to west, 

And poor earth’s stillness 

Between her stately palms. 
Young Love lies drowsing 

Away to poppied death; 

Cool shadows deepen 

Across the sleeping face: 

So fails the summer 

With warm delicious breath; 

And what hath autumn 

To give us in its place? 
Draw close the curtains 

Of branched evergreen; 

Change cannot touch them 

With fading fingers sere: 

Here first the violets 

Perhaps with bud unseen, 

And a dove, may be, 

Return to nestle here.

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