Home  »  A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895  »  The Jungfrau’s Cry

Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908). A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895. 1895.

Stopford Augustus Brooke b. 1832

The Jungfrau’s Cry

I, VIRGIN of the Snows, have liv’d

Uncounted years apart;

Mated with Sunlight, Stars and Heaven,

But I am cold at heart.

High mates! Ye teach me purity,

And lonely thought and truth;

But I have never liv’d, and yet

I have eternal youth.

Blow, tropic winds, and warm rains, fall,

And melt my snowy crest;

Let soft woods clothe my shoulders fair,

Deep grass lie on my breast.

And let me feed a thousand herds,

And hear the tinkling bells,

Till the brown châlets cluster close

In all my stream-fed dells.

So may I hear the sweep of scythes,

And beating of the flails,

My maidens singing as they spin,

And the voice of nightingales.

And little children in their joy,

And, where my violets hide,

Soft interchange of lovers’ vows,

Sweet hymns at eventide.

Alas! cold Sunlight, Stars and Heaven,

My high companions, call.

The ice-clad life is pure and stern:

I am weary of it all.