Books – Zora Bernice May Cross

Oh! Bury me in books when I am dead, 

Fair quarto leaves of ivory and gold, 

And silk octavos, bound in brown and red, 

That tales of love and chivalry unfold. 

Heap me in volumes of fine vellum wrought, 

Creamed with the close content of silent speech; 

Wrap me in sapphire tapestries of thought 

From some old epic out of common reach. 

I would my shroud were verse-embroidered too— 

Your verse for preference—in starry stitch, 

And powdered o’er with rhymes that poets woo, 

Breathing dream-lyrics in moon-measures rich. 

Night holds me with a horror of the grave 

That knows not poetry, nor song, nor you; 

Nor leaves of love that down the ages weave 

Romance and fire in burnished cloths of blue. 

Oh, bury me in books, and I’ll not mind 

The cold, slow worms that coil around my head; 

Since my lone soul may turn the page and find 

The lines you wrote to me, when I am dead.