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Poems by Isaac Rosenberg

; ; ! FRAGMENTS OF "THE

; ; ! FRAGMENTS OF "THE UNICORN" For you were wed to a girl And I am a woman. My lonely days are not whips to my honour. [She dries her tears zvith her hair, then fingers the Yours, friend. amulet at her throat.] Nubian [Eagerly.] My amulet ! My amulet [He speaks gravely.] Small comfort is counsel to broken lives But tolerance is medicinal. In all our textures are loosed Pulses straining against strictness Because an easy issue lies therefrom. (Could they but slink past the hands holding whips To hunt them from the human pale Where is the accident to cover ? Spite fears bias.) I am justified at my heart's plea He is justified also. For the eyes of vanity are sleepless—are suspicious. Are mad with imaginings Of secret stabs in words, in looks, in gestures. 125

POEMS BY ISAAC ROSENBERG Man is a chimera's eremite, That lures him from the good kindness of days Which only ask his willingness. — There is a crazed shadow from no golden body That poisons at the core What smiles may stray : It mixes with all God-ancest railed essences, And twists the brain and heart. This shadow sits in the texture of Saul's being, Mauling your love and beauty with its lies: I hold a power like light to shrivel it There, in your throat's hollow—that green jade. [He snatches at it as she lets it fall. He grows white and troubled, and walks to where A.mak is playing, and sees minutely strewn pieces ofpaper.] [He mutters.'] Lost—lost. The child has torn the scroll in it, And half is away. It cannot be spelt now. Lilith God, restore me his love. Ah! Well! [She rises."] 126

Redcliffe Voice Issue 6 Summer 2018