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Henry Masterman Mist Diaries and Prisoners Pie Magazine


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Shall I attempt the Italian skies

To paint a deeper blue?

And deck the fields of Arcady

In more resplendent hue?

Or teach the nightingale to sing

More rapturous a refrain?

And tune the angels' harps in heaven

To some more ravishing strain?

Shall I still prettier modesty

The dainty violet loan?

Enrich the balms of Araby

To charms beyond their own?

Or to the sun a candle hold,

To show its peerless light?

Encrust the stars with diamonds,

That they appear more bright?

Oh! vainest of all vanities,

Such idle thoughts to raise!

Yet vainer still it is for me

To sing my Lady's praise. C.

Autumn Leaves.

Like waiting bridges in their wedding robes,

The leaves are whispering to each other wonderingly.

When the next sun dawns

They are gone.

And with quick rustling steps

And ceaseless whisperings,

They hurry onwards after the flying wind.

They wander along the rainy roads

.........And the heavy wheels

pass over them. J.A.W.

O Touch us Not.

O touch us not, Eternal Magdalen!

The whole world fades away when your pale face

Yearns out to us, the Saviours of Men.

Yea, all our luminous dreams are faded then,

And we hold shadows strained in our embrace.

O touch us not, Eternal Magdalen!

No more we preach on Mountains, or have ken

Of aught to speak of. Yea, we are grown base,

We, who would fain be Saviours of Men.

Hold back your hands, and come not near us when

We agonise in this dim Garden Place.

O touch us not, Eternal Magdalen,

For we would be the Saviours of Men. I.H.

BC Archives, MS-2570 Box 1 File 6 / MIST, Henry Masterman, Ruhleben magazine, Prisoners' Pie, 1916)