The Fall of Galahad
Her hair was brown, but dusted gold
Shone on it, by a young wind blown;
It lived in light and seemed to hold
The sun or star shine for its own.
Her eyes were like Our Lady's, grey;
They ransomed light for other light;
They were a daydream of the day,
The echo of a perfect night.
The beauty of her face compelled
All thought, all reason, everything,
Yet half-withdrew, and just withheld
The crown of its imagining.
Her step was like a soft leaf's fall
That wakes a sleeper in the wood.
It came, and when it went, then all
Had gone from life that seemed most good.
One instant, for a moment's space,
She stood before him where he prayed;
He felt her eyes, he felt her face,—
The wind that touched her in the glade.
He left his prayer, forgot the place,
Forgot the Vision of the Grael;
He saw her eyes, her hair, her face,—
His hilt-cross struck the Altar-rail.
The music ceased, the shrine was rent,—
He never cast one glance behind,
But followed on the way she went,
A hidden way and hard to find.