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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.
The Library of the World’s Best Literature. An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

A Parable

By Mathilde Blind (1841–1896)

BETWEEN the sandhills and the sea

A narrow strip of silver sand,

Whereon a little maid doth stand,

Who picks up shells continually,

Between the sandhills and the sea.

Far as her wondering eyes can reach,

A vastness heaving gray in gray

To the frayed edges of the day

Furls his red standard on the breach

Between the sky-line and the beach.

The waters of the flowing tide

Cast up the sea-pink shells and weed;

She toys with shells, and doth not heed

The ocean, which on every side

Is closing round her vast and wide.

It creeps her way as if in play,

Pink shells at her pink feet to cast;

But now the wild waves hold her fast,

And bear her off and melt away,

A vastness heaving gray in gray.