When bony Death has chilled her gentle blood
And dimmed the brightness of her wistful eyes,
And stamped her glorious beauty into mud
By his old skill in hateful wizardies.
When an old lichened marble strives to tell
How sweet a grace, how red a lip was hers ;
When rheumy gray-beards say, “I knew her well,”
showing the grave to curious worshippers.
When all the roses that she sowed in me
Have dripped their crimson petals and decayed
Leaving no greenery on any tree
That her dear hands in my heart’s garden laid,
Then grant, old Time, to my green mouldering skull
These songs may keep her memory beautiful.
Masefield, John. “Beauty’s Mirror.” The Venture: an Annual of Art and Literature, vol. 1, 1903, p. 1. Venture Digital Edition, edited by Lorraine Janzen Kooistra, 2019-2021. Yellow Nineties 2.0, Ryerson University Centre for Digital Humanities, 2021, https://1890s.ca/vv1-masefield-mirror