Love and Kindness

A voice of pity strove to bless
In accents bountifully kind,
But still my grief knew no redress,
Grown mad and blind.

The presence made herself my slave,
Hither and thither came and went:
All that she had poor Kindness gave,
Till all was spent.

She tried to soothe and make me whole:
Her touch was torment in my pain;
It froze my heart, benumbed my soul,
And crazed my brain.

At last, her duty all fulfilled,
She turned with cheerful ease away,
Yet would have lingered, had I willed
That she should stay.

And lo! there knelt, where she had stood,
One, wistful as a child might be,
Who blushed at her own hardihood
In helping me.

She said no word, she only turned
Her passionate sweet eyes on mine,
Until within my sorrow burned
A bliss divine.

And in that gaze I woke once more
To earth beneath and heaven above—
This was not Kindness, as before,
But only Love.