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

From ‘The Wild Mare in the Desert’

By Alfred de Musset (1810–1857)

OFT in the waste, the Arab mare untamed,

After three days’ wild course awaits the storm

To drain the rain-drops from the thirsty palms;

The sun is leaden, and the silent palms

Droop their long tresses ’neath a fiery sky.

She seeks her well amid the boundless wilds:

The sun has dried it; on the burning rock

Lie shaggy lions growling low in sleep.

Her forces fail; her bleeding nostrils wide

Plunge eager in the sand,—the thirsty sand

Drinks greedily her life’s discolored stream.

Then stretches she at length, her great eyes film,

And the wan desert rolls upon its child

In silent folds its ever moving shroud.

She knew not, she, that when the caravan

With all its camels passed beneath the planes,

That, would she follow, bowing her proud neck,

In Bagdad she would find cool stable-stalls,

With gilded mangers, dewy clover turf,

And wells whose depths have never seen the sky.