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PARIS, 1901.

I knew when first I looked into her eyes,
And she in mine, that what has been must be,
And so let others say she told them lies:
She told no lie to me!
She spoke me fair, of lees as well as wine,
Then, with that subtlest charm of all her charms,
Half-dropped her languid lids, and at the sign
I ran into her arms!


Now it is she who flings my window wide
At dawn, and lets the perfumed morning in,
And she who walks so softly at my side,
Through noonday's dust and din.
But, most of all, 't is she, where blue night falls,
Whose firm, imperious fingers tap the pane,
And she whose velvet voice it is that calls,
Nor calls her own in vain!


It is as if the siren understood
How that she is so strong at this still hour,
That I could not repulse her if I would,
Nor would, had I the power:
As if she knew that, should I try to check
The strength of that enrapt, responsive thrill,
Let her but slide her arm about my neck,
And I obey her will!


So, when she speaks, I answer; when she woos,
Her voice, like wine, the slow pulse goads and spurs:
I go to meet her through the dropping dews,
And lean my lips to hers.
All the long hours run laughing into one--
The strange, sweet moment when the evening falls--
And, like a mother summoning her son,
Resistless Paris calls!