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Date Posted: 19:11:32 03/01/01 Thu
Author: Toby Abbot
Subject: Elouise

One winter night,dulled with solitude's ache,
I took to bed to pass the slow, grey hours,
While outside, winds shook the bare bowers,
Troubling my mind as I lay awake.

In the borderlands, from some seraph's lair,
Fate shot an arrow from her silver bow,
Light entered the room, like a taper's glow,
As if an answer to some vesper prayer.

A white figure appeared beside my bed,
She spoke her name, her voice was soft and sweet,
I felt light as she pulled me to my feet,
Though before my body had felt like lead.

A strange feeling that we had met before,
Occurred to me as we walked down the stairs,
And as we stepped into the cold night air,
I noticed her feet barely touched the floor.

As we walked and talked of my troubled plight,
I gazed at her hair of golden wire,
That echoed like a trail of fire,
And her sapphire eyes that lit the night.

She told me that I had strayed from the path,
And wandered into the slough of despair,
And now, veiled in gloom, was unaware,
That no longer did I smile or laugh.

That the jaws of winter would pull me deep,
Further into sorrow's grasp than before,
Was the worry that brought her to my door,
She feared that I might force a longer sleep.

As I listened to her words of harsh truth,
We went to trace the path of my decay,
First, to the place where I began my days,
Then to the long forgotten haunts of youth.

The woods where I walked in halcyon days,
By the stream ,where I stood to watch its ebb,
The branches woven like a spider's web,
And now enwreathed in twilight's misty haze.

Then, to the sable grove, where I used to dwell,
With one, elusive, and so long pursued,
In the whirlwind of her quicksilver moods,
This was where our love tolled its passing bell.

All these memories I had dragged like chains,
Dusty urns of dreams I had tried to forget,
A charnel-house full of bitter regrets,
That, before, I thought time's scythe had slain.

Now I could see how I had lost my way,
The past years had been a slow descent,
From the idyll of youth to days ill-spent,
Another lost soul had been led astray.

But now these demons had been exorcised,
The ashes, at last, blown from the embers,
At peace with all that I could remember,
And like a phoenix, I began to rise.

Before, I had lived behind prison bars,
Only weary bones and lustreless eyes,
She taught me to look for where beauty lies,
To gaze again with wonder at the stars.

In my darkest night, I had been reborn,
I had glimpsed the heaven that follows hell,
She took me home, to what had been my cell,
And sat beside me as I slept till dawn.

A velvet blanket of soft, drifted snow,
Awaited me,as I awoke alone,
Without trace, she had left,as if she'd flown,
But angels leave no footprints when they go.

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