Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
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Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
 
The Rose of the World
By William Butler Yeats (1865–1939)
 
WHO dream’d that beauty passes like a dream?
For these red lips, with all their mournful pride,
Mournful that no new wonder may betide,
Troy pass’d away in one high funeral gleam,
And Usna’s children died.        5
 
We and the labouring world are passing by:
Amid men’s souls, that waver and give place
Like the pale waters in their wintry race
Under the passing stars, foam of the sky,
Lives on this lonely face.        10
 
Bow down, archangels, in your dim abode:
Before you were, or any hearts to beat,
Weary and kind one linger’d by His seat;
He made the world to be a grassy road
Before her wandering feet.        15
 
 
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