“The king did start,
Gripped my strong hands, and held me to his heart,
And could not speak a moment. Then he set
A curb of sorrow and subdued its dart.
‘Go! and the blessing of high God attend
Thy path, and lead thee to the doubtful end.
No tongue that secret ever may reveal.
Thy soul is god-like and thy frame is steel;
Thou mayst win the quest—the king, thy friend,
Gives thee his sword to keep thee—Gereth, kneel!
‘I dub thee Earl; arise!’ And then there rings
The queen’s voice: ‘Shall my love not match the king’s?
Here, from my finger drawn, this gem of power
Shall guard thee in some unimagined hour.
It hath strange virtue over mortal things.
I freely give it for thy stirrup’s dower.’
I left the presence. Now the buffeting wind
Gladdens my face—I leave the court behind.
Am I Stark mad? My face grows grim and grave;
I see—O Mary Mother, speak and save!
I stare and stare until mine eyes are blind—
There was no jewel in the ring she gave!” [via]
“Yet, did I raise my head, throughout the gloom
I might behold thine eyes as red as fire,
A tigress maddened with supreme desire.
White arms that clasp me, fervent breast that glides
An eager snake, about my breast and sides,
And white teeth keen to bite, red tongue that tires,
And lips ensanguine with unfed desires,
Hot breath and hands, disheveled hair and head,
Thy fevered mouth like snakes’ mouths crimson red,
A very beast of prey; and I like thee,
Fiery, unweary, as thou art of me.” [via]
“Fond limbs with mine were intertwined,
A hand lascivious fondled me;
My ears grew deaf, my eyes grew blind,
My tongue was hot from kisses free,
Short madness, and we lazily
Lolled back upon the bed of fire.
I was a-weary — her desire
Drew her upon me — Marion, fie!
You work our pleasure till I tire:
But we must part, and love must die.” [via]
“At birth I had three of the distinguishing marks of a Buddha. I was tongue-tied, I had a characteristic membrane which necessitated an operation, and over the centre of my heart I had four hairs curling from left to right in the exact form of a Swastika.” [via, also]