[Editor: This poem by William Blocksidge (also known as William Baylebridge) was published in Songs o’ the South (1908).]
God! how sweet and wondrous fair —
And standing there!
God! how young and tender seeming —
Or am I dreaming?
For, alas, those glances tell —
God! — that she’s a nymph of hell!
Shall I draw my sword? Nor weep
To wound her deep?
Shall my blood be on her head —
Though then she’s dead? —
Tempter fair, though thou’d betray,
Sooner shall I die than slay!
William Blocksidge, Songs o’ the South, London: Watts, 1908, p. 3
nymph = in Greek and Roman mythology, nymphs were young beautiful nubile women, with a propensity to dance, sing, and frolic; they were a class of deity who were not immortal but had very long lives; the dwelling places of most nymphs were generally depicted as being forests, groves, and mountains, and in or nearby lakes, springs, and streams, although there were also sea nymphs
thou’d = (archaic) thou would (i.e. you would)
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