Emily Dickinson

A Precious mouldering Pleasure

poem 371

A precious mouldering pleasure ’tis To meet an Antique Book In just the Dress his Century wore A privilege I think His venerable Hand to take And warming in our own A passage back or two to make To Times when he was young His quaint opinions to inspect His thought to ascertain On Themes concern our mutual mind The Literature of Man What interested Scholars most What Competitions ran When Plato was a Certainty And Sophocles a Man When Sappho was a living Girl And Beatrice wore The Gown that Dante deified Facts Centuries before He traverses familiar As One should come to Town And tell you all your Dreams were true He lived where Dreams were born His presence is Enchantment You beg him not to go Old Volume shake their Vellum Heads And tantalize just so

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