In Praise of Shame
Last night unto my bed bethought there came Our lady of strange dreams, and from an urn She poured live fire, so that mine eyes did burn At the sight of it. Anon the floating fame Took many shapes, and one cried: "I am shame That walks with Love, I am most wise to turn Cold lips and limbs to fire; therefore discern And see my loveliness, and praise my name." And afterwords, in radiant garments dressed With sound of flutes and laughing of glad lips, A pomp of all the passions passed along All the night through; till the white phantom ships Of dawn sailed in. Whereat I said this song, "Of all sweet passions Shame is the loveliest."
This poem is in the public domain.