Enamels and Cameos/Carmen
Slender is Carmen, of lissome guise,
Her hair is black as the midnight’s heart;
Dark circles are under her gypsy eyes,
Her swarthy skin is the devil’s art.
The women will mock at her form and face;
But the men will follow her all the day.
Toledo’s Archbishop (now save His Grace!)
Tones his mass at her knees, they say.
Nestled in warmth of her amber neck
Lies a massive coil, till she fling it down
To be a raiment to frame and deck
Her delicate body from foot to crown.
Then out from her pallid face with power
Her witching, terrible smiles compel.
Her mouth is a mystical poison-flower
That hath drawn its crimson from hearts in hell.
The haughtiest beauty must yield her fame,
When this strange vision shall dusk her sky.
For Carmen rules, and her glance’s flame
Shall set the torch to satiety.
Wild, graceless Carmen! — Though yet this be,
Savour she hath of a world undreamt,
Of a world of wonder, whose salt young sea
Provoked a Venus to rise and tempt.