[YC 122 Poetry] I Danced With Her, Cloaked In Night

I Danced With Her, Cloaked in Night

I knew her when I still was young, for my fam’ly knew her well,
And all and sundry spoke of her,
With rev’rent awe, yet they prefer,
To leave her dance alone, so turns,
She ‘neath the stars, swirling round the gown of night she wore,
And surely I was far too young; she’s for men who came before,
But that night came I came a man,
And smiling coaxed me ‘cross that span,
Of ages, seized me by my hands,
And from the challenge courtsied, let the music ‘twixt us knell.

“I knew you when I still was young and I oft wondered when we’d meet,
I said, “You’re fairer than they say,
When they recall the fateful day,
They first beheld you ‘neath the rays,
Of light that lit the charming whit of wile within your smile.”
We turned a natural turn though she spoke solemnly a while,
For men who’d wooed her ne’er recall,
By faith and bravery withal,
She’d answer at their every call,
To hold them dear and dance until the daylight they could greet.

She’d tell me tales when I was young that heave my heart with horror now,
And with a pivot step she told,
Of men and women she’d enfold,
And in the silent notes behold,
Them laid to sleep beside her in the meadows ‘neath the stars,
But for one sleepless night deigned she to grace them in their arms,
“Forsooth, is all your perfect beauty,
Thus to mask some callous cruelty,
That you as some bitter duty,
Vow eternity in loving bliss, a kiss as winds ephemeral?”

And though I’d heard when I was young her heart was as some callous stone,
Closely held, she spoke through tears,
Of time where hours turned to years,
Of her great Lord the good revere,
Of gallants, lemans both she’d kept and lost to His decree,
She’d cherished every one, and pled for each eternally.
But she could not with wealth afford,
To keep one lover from her Lord,
For unto untold gold reward,
They left her at the sunrise, let her wake in dark alone.

Oh, I’d been warned when I was young, seek not that stunning silver gaze,
But by those whispers on her lips,
And hands allowed around her hips,
To gentle, supple steps and slips,
Become enthralled, for moonlight lit her eyes and welling tears,
She mourned my coming leaving even as she held me near,
Her touch, as fire, made me brave,
And strong and safe, ‘ere came that day,
Our dance would find that last chassé,
Among her dew-dropped grasses shrouded in her polonaise.

But I knew I still was young and, heavy-hearted, stepped aside,
“Apologies, I must depart,
Though it is sure you’ll have my heart,
One night, I’ve yet to play the part,
Set for me in the Works my Lord had writ as His command,
I dried her eyes, and later prized her kiss upon my hand,
My token troth that I would keep,
Her in my prayers, and one night sweep,
Her ‘round this hall again and sleep,
Beside her in the fields, to keep her comp’ny come the light.

And to this day for her I pray, for she had ever meant me love,
Her arms enlaced to my embrace when one night I’m no longer young,
And hence adrift her stygian gift those del’cate, pallid fingers call,
I’ll remember I danced with her, and to her shimm’ring darkness fall.


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