OH, Sunshine Spirit, I have seen
Your gold wings spread aslant the green;
Have watched their splendours trail along
The woodland ways where wild flowers throng,
And seen your slim feet slip between;
Looked on your limbs so shimmerous white,
Flushed in a lucent mist of light;
Seen your child face peer wildly fair
Through parted strands of shining hair,
And wist not if I saw aright!
In gardens where tired feet can wade
Through flowers set thick in slumbrous shade—
Across wide languorous lawns sun-swept,
Your fleeting fairy form has crept
Between the shadows unafraid. . . .
Because your subtle smile had caught
My soul in tangled trance of thought—
Your sweet hushed speech I strove to hear,
You seemed to sway so strangely near . . .
Sun-Vision, was it I you sought?
A mortal maid, whose heart is yet
Too full of all the world’s vain fret—
The mournful music of this Star—
That you who have been born afar
Hear only faintly—and forget. . . .
Stay, Spirit ‘neath these sighing trees,
Whose lace-like shadow broideries
Dapple your dainty loveliness. . . .
Are you a dream? I cannot guess . . .
God’s earth is full of mysteries. . . .
Custance, Olive. “Sunshine.” The Yellow Book, vol. 9, April 1896, pp. 187-188. Yellow Book Digital Edition, edited by Dennis Denisoff and Lorraine Janzen Kooistra 2010-2014. Yellow Nineties 2.0, Ryerson University Centre for Digital Humanities, 2020. https://1890s.ca/YBV9_custance_sunshine/