I Met at Eve

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I Met at Eve
written by Walter de la Mare
Songs of Childhood (1902)




    I met at eve the Prince of Sleep,
    His was a still and lovely face,
    He wandered through a valley steep
      Lovely in a lonely place.

    His garb was grey of lavender,
    About his brows a poppy-wreath
    Burned like dim coals, and everywhere
      The air was sweeter for his breath.

    His twilight feet no sandals wore,
    His eyes shone faint in their own flame,
    Fair moths that gloomed his steps before
      Seemed letters of his lovely name.

    His house is in the mountain ways,
    A phantom house of misty walls,
    Whose golden flocks at evening graze,
      And witch the moon with muffled calls.

    Upwelling from his shadowy springs
    Sweet waters shake a trembling sound,
    There flit the hoot-owl's silent wings,
      There hath his web the silkworm wound.

    Dark in his pools clear visions lurk,
    And rosy, as with morning buds,
    Along his dales of broom and birk
      Dreams haunt his solitary woods.

    I met at eve the Prince of Sleep,
    His was a still and lovely face,
    He wandered through a valley steep,
      Lovely in a lonely place.

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