"The Soul of the Rose" by John William Waterhouse
I shall not build a shrine for you —
oh, no — not yet —
you are not gone from these woods.
The fire on the hearth is slowing its heat,
but embers still shine beneath graying ash;
memories are vivid, not yet pale.
We were caught within epochs,
strayed from paths we were meant to follow —
how else could we have met,
creating this melody together?
You are stilled by the years,
yet your shadow dances against the wall —
there is music in silence, too.
Do not pine away or offer regrets
for what was left unsaid or undone —
miracles occur without our assistance,
without our prior knowledge or approval;
be glad if only for the greening of grass,
the gentle lilt of springbird's song.
I am quiet, yet my actions rise up in protest
against the coming of dusk;
I do not accept the inevitable with any grace,
I will not listen to the scythe slice the wind
as it comes ever closer to our threshold.
Be warm beneath the cloak I wove for you
of words, of sighs, of murmurs.
I shall lean all my weight against the door,
going without sleep, never pausing to rest,
in order to keep the dark one at bay.