Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895
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Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895.  1895.
 
The Great Breath
 
George William Russell (1867–1935)
 
 
IITS edges foamed with amethyst and rose,
Withers once more the old blue flower of day:
There where the ether like a diamond glows
    Its petals fade away.
 
A shadowy tumult stirs the dusky air;        5
Sparkle the delicate dews, the distant snows;
The great deep thrills, for through it everywhere
    The breath of Beauty blows.
 
I saw how all the trembling ages past,
Moulded to her by deep and deeper breath,        10
Neared to the hour when Beauty breathes her last
    And knows herself in death.
 

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