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To Ellen Terry poem – Alfred Austin


Nay, bring forth none but daughters: daughters young,

The doubles of yourself; with face as fair,

Bearing as candid, gait as debonair,

And voice as deeply, musically strung:

That the less fortunate age, from this age sprung,

In those transmitted gleams of what you were,

May hear your laughter, gaze on your despair,

And all but know the witchery of your tongue.

Thus shall the unsteadfast dagger of Macbeth

Be nerved by his male spouse; thus Shylock’s knife,

Glittering to smite, be dulled by Portia’s breath;

Thus saucy Beatrice be won for life,

Juliet in loving warble out her life,

And true Ophelia madden unto death.


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