The Veil

Walter de la Mare 1873 (Charlton, London) – 1956 (Twickenham)

I think and think: yet still I fail —
Why must this lady wear a veil?
Why thus elect to mask her face
Beneath that dainty web of lace?
The tip of a small nose I see,
And two red lips, set curiously
Like twin-born berries on one stem,
And yet, she has netted even them.
Her eyes, 'tis plain, survey with ease
Whate'er to glance upon they please.
Yet, whether hazel, gray, or blue,
Or that even lovelier lilac hue,
I cannot guess: why — why deny
Such beauty to the passer-by?
Out of a bush a nightingale
May expound his song; from 'neath that veil
A happy mouth no doubt can make
English sound sweeter for its sake.
But then, why muffle in like this
What every blossomy wind would kiss?
Why in that little night disguise
A daybreak face, those starry eyes?

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Walter de la Mare

Walter John de la Mare was an English poet short story writer and novelist best remembered for his works for children and The Listeners He was born in Kent and was educated at St Pauls Cathedral School His first book Songs of Childhood was published under the name Walter Ramal His 1921 novel Memoirs of a Midget won the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for fiction more…

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    "The Veil" Poetry.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 27 Sep. 2020. <https://www.poetry.net/poem/38338/the-veil>.

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