Verse > Anthologies > Harriet Monroe, ed. > Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, 1912–22
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Harriet Monroe, ed. (1860–1936).  Poetry: A Magazine of Verse.  1912–22.
 
In a Garden
By John Rodker
 
  THERE was a paved alley there,
Apple trees and a lush lawn—
And over the gray wall where the plums were
Stood the red brick of the chapel.
While over the long white wall        5
Where the green apples grew
And the rusted pears
Hung the gray tower of the church;
So high, you couldn’t see the top
From that narrow garden.        10
 
  In that narrow garden, on that lush lawn,
We found a ball left from some croquet game.
It had a blue stripe girdling it,
And, “Ah,” I thought,
“It is your soul about me,        15
And we are flung
Between our separate desires.”
 
  In that narrow garden
On the lush lawn,
We flung this ball each to other.        20
My eyes were only for your legs, your arms,
Under that hot sun.
The hard ball hurt my hands,
Made them hot and prickly,
And I’d have stopped        25
But feared losing you
While you too stayed on playing—
“Ah, if I’d but known
Because you would not have me go.”
 
  We played so long,        30
I’d ceased to think—
All thought, each sense,
Rapt in the shimmering circumference;
The blue stripe girdling it
Shone in the sky.        35
 
  Then I seemed looking down
From some far field,
With this ball as one of worlds
Scorned
And cast from each to other,        40
Blue water girdling them—
 
By and by the tea-bell rang.
 
 
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