The Spouse

By Luis G. Dato

Rose in her hand and moist eyes young with weeping,
She stands upon the threshold of her house,
Fragrant with scent that wakens love from sleeping,
She looks far down to where her husband plows.

Her hair disheveled in the night of passion,
Her warm limbs humid with the sacred strife,
What may she know what man and woman fashion
Out of the clay of ire and sorrow. Life?

She holds no joys beyond the day’s tomorrow,
She finds no worlds beyond her love’s embrace,
She looks behind the form behind the furrow,
Who is her Mind, her Motion, Time and Space.

O somber mystery of eyes unspeaking,
O dark enigma of life’s love forlorn;
The Sphinx beside the river smiles with seeking
The sacred answer since the world was born.

— Philippine Magazine, January 1934


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