My books are like a lovely land
Where Life and Death walk hand in hand,
Where I may pluck in happy ease
A branch of faëry fantasies;
Or take the little skiff of dreams
And sail enchanted summer streams
To reach a blessed isle of light
Where there is never fear of night.
My books are as a magic world
Within this dull one wisely curled --
A realm of immortality
Where I am queen of land of sea,
And all the subjects of the soul
That wander there in Love's control
Through my serene imagining.
Hector in anguish fights for me,
Ulysses sails a stormy sea;
Queen Guinevere and Lancelot ride
Between the elm-trees side by side,
And many a man and many a maid
In leafy lane and glad, green glade
To faëry cymbals lightly dance
From out the leaves of old Romance.
Ah, mighty kingdom of the mind,
That rules the hearts of all mankind,
When I remember that for me,
For my undreamed mortality,
My little soul, unthought, unborn,
Great poets sang in some far morn,
I am unhumble than the air
Lingering here on Song's first stair.
First published in The Bulletin, 27 May 1920