Page:Aurora Leigh a Poem.djvu/395

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AURORA LEIGH.

By a supposition that she wanted these,
Could act the husband’s coat and hat set up
To creak i’ the wind and drive the world-crows off
From pecking in her garden. Straw can fill
A hole to keep out vermin. Now, at last,
I own heaven’s angels round her life suffice
To fight the rats of our society,
Without this Romney: I can see it at last;
And here is ended my pretension which
The most pretended. Over-proud of course,
Even so!—but not so stupid . . blind . . that I,
Whom thus the great Taskmaster of the world
Has set to meditate mistaken work,
My dreary face against a dim blank wall
Throughout man’s natural lifetime,—could pretend
Or wish . . O love, I have loved you! O my soul,
I have lost you!—but I swear by all yourself,
And all you might have been to me these years,
If that June-morning had not failed my hope,—
I’m not so bestial, to regret that day
This night,—this night, which still to you is fair;
Nay, not so blind, Aurora. I attest
Those stars above us, which I cannot see . . . ’

‘You cannot.’ . .
‘That if Heaven itself should stoop,
Remit the lots, and give me another chance,
I’d say, ‘No other!’—I’d record my blank.
Aurora never should be wife of mine.’