ON A GREEK VASE
by: Frank Dempster Sherman
shapen cup, thy lip
- Unto me seemeth thus to speak:
- "Behold in me the workmanship,
- The grace and cunning of a Greek!
- "Long ages since he mixed the clay,
- Whose sense of symmetry was such,
- The labor of a single day
- Immortal grew beneath his touch.
- "For dreaming while his fingers went
- Around this slender neck of mine,
- The form of her he loved was blent
- With every matchless curve and line.
- "Her loveliness to me he gave
- Who gave unto herself his heart,
- That love and beauty from the grave
- Might rise and live again in art."
- And hearing from thy lips this tale
- Of love and skill, of art and grace,
- Thou seem'st to me no more the frail
- Momento of an older race:
- But in thy form divinely wrought
- And figured o'er with fret and scroll,
- I dream, by happy chance was caught,
- And dwelleth now, that maiden's soul.
MORE POEMS BY FRANK DEMPSTER SHERMAN
"On a Greek Vase" is reprinted
from The Little Book of American Poets: 1787-1900. Ed.
Jessie B. Rittenhouse. Cambridge: Riverside Press, 1915.