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Evening Song Of Senlin

 from Senlin: A Biography 

It is moonlight.
Alone in the silence I ascend my stairs once more, While waves, remote in a pale blue starlight, Crash on a white sand shore.
It is moonlight.
The garden is silent.
I stand in my room alone.
Across my wall, from the far-off moon, A rain of fire is thrown .
There are houses hanging above the stars, And stars hung under a sea: And a wind from the long blue vault of time Waves my curtain for me .
I wait in the dark once more, Swung between space and space: Before my mirror I lift my hands And face my remembered face.
Is it I who stand in a question here, Asking to know my name? .
It is I, yet I know not whither I go, Nor why, nor whence I came.
It is I, who awoke at dawn And arose and descended the stair, Conceiving a god in the eye of the sun,— In a woman's hands and hair.
It is I whose flesh is gray with the stones I builded into a wall: With a mournful melody in my brain Of a tune I cannot recall .
There are roses to kiss: and mouths to kiss; And the sharp-pained shadow of death.
I remember a rain-drop on my cheek,— A wind like a fragrant breath .
And the star I laugh on tilts through heaven; And the heavens are dark and steep .
I will forget these things once more In the silence of sleep.

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