Unequal Love [poem by Menie Parkes]

[Editor: This poem by Menie Parkes was published in Poems (1867).]

Unequal Love.

Oh, luckless is the unequal love
That the stern eagle and devoted dove
Have pledged in the depth of the mountain grove,
In some forgetful hour;
For his flight the eagle has taken high,
With an endless aim to the distant sky;
And his lonely, pale bride must vainly sigh
In her deserted bower.

And luckless is her lord’s return,
Tho’ the pale dove’s heart for that hour doth burn,
And braces its strength his glory to learn, —
The poor little gentle dove!
Her ear never sound of discord heard,
And her heart has never by rage been stirred;
She mates not that highborn and furious bird; —
There’s death in an eagle’s love.

Their paths are as wide apart as are
Those of the morning and evening star;
And his wild achievements her soft thoughts mar,
Till sadly the vain tears start;
Already unloved, already proved weak,
Her lord his revenge on his choice doth wreak,
Plunging the death from his sharp, cruel beak
Deep into her patient heart.

Menie Parkes, Poems, F. Cunninghame, Sydney, [1867], page 26

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