BETA

Mariana.

Mariana in the moated grange.”
—Measure for Measure.
With blackest moss the flower-plots1
Were thickly crusted, one and all,2
The rusted nails fell from the knots3
That held the peach to the garden wall.4
The broken sheds look’d sad and strange,5
Unlifted was the clinking latch,6
Weeded and worn the ancient thatch,7
Upon the lonely moated grange.8
She only said, “ My life is dreary,9
He cometh not,” she said :10
She said, “ I am aweary, aweary ;11
I would that I were dead !”12
Her tears fell with the dews at even,13
Her tears fell ere the dews were dried,14
She could not look on the sweet heaven,15
Either at morn or eventide.16
After the flitting of the bats,17
When thickest dark did trance the sky,18
She drew her casement curtain by,19
And glanced athwart the glooming flats.20
She only said, “ The night is dreary,21
He cometh not,” she said :22
She said, “ I am aweary, aweary,23
I would that I were dead !”24
Upon the middle of the night,25
Waking she heartd the nightfowl crow:26
The cock sang out an hour ere light :27
From the dark fen the oxen’s low28
Came to her : without hope of change,29
In sleep she seemed to walk forlorn,30
Till cold winds woke the grey-eyed morn31
About the lonely moated grange.32
She only said, “ The day is dreary,33
He cometh not,” she said :34
She said, “ I am aweary, aweary,35
I would that I were dead !”36
About a stonecast from the wall,37
A sluice with clacken’d waters slept,38
And o’er it many, round and small,39
The clustered marishmosses crept.40
Hard by a poplar shook alway,41
All silver green with gnarled bark,42
For leagues no other tree did dark43
The level waste, the rounding grey.44
She only said, “ My life is dreary,45
He cometh not,” she said :46
She said, “ I am aweary, aweary,47
I would that I were dead !”48
And ever when the moon was low,49
And the shrill winds wer up an’ away,50
In the white curtain, to and fro,51
She saw the gusty shadow sway.52
But when the moon was very low,53
And wild winds bound within their cell,54
The shadow of the poplar fell55
Upon her bed, across her brow.56
She only said, “ The night is dreary,57
He cometh not,” she said :58
She said, “ I am aweary, aweary,59
I would that I were dead !”60
All day within the dreamy house,61
The doors upon their hinges creak’d62
The blue fly sang i’ the pane ; the mouse63
Behind the mouldering wainscot shriek’d,64
Or from the crevice peer’d about.65
Old faces glimmer’d through the doors,66
Old footsteps trode the upper floors,67
Old voices call’d her from without.68
She only said, “ My life is dreary,69
He cometh not,” she said :70
She said, “ I am aweary, aweary,71
I would that I were dead !”72
The sparrow’s chirrup on the roof,73
The slow clock ticking, and the sound74
Which to the wooing wind aloof75
The poplar made, did all confound76
Her sense ; but most she loath’d the hour77
When the thickmoted sunbeam lay78
Athwart the chambers, and the day79
Downsloped was westering in his bower.80
Then, said she, “ I am very dreary,81
He will not come,” she said :82
She wept, “ I am aweary, aweary,83
Oh God, that I were dead !”84