As she stood on the edge of the pool,
Her body so fair and so white,
Preparing herself for a dive,
She was a beautiful sight.
And there, for a moment, she paused,
Looked down at the water below
That reflected the shimmering stars;
The whispering breezes, that blow
Oft in the night, rippled her hair
Which hung in soft waves to her waist.
Then she pois’ed herself for the plunge,
Betraying not least sign of haste.
She dived; and the silvery splash
Cleft the silence that hung o’er the night.
She vanished an instant from view
But quickly returned to my sight.
She threw back her head to the stars,
And raising her voice to the moon
Sang a passionate love song of old,
A song that was ended too soon.
The forest came forth at her call,
Stood enthralled as the song became sad;
Then they answered her back with a cry,
The cry of a forest gone mad.
They danced when she finished her song,
By the light that came down through the trees;
In a frenzy, they danced till they dropped,
That this fair maid they might please.
Then they lay on the ground—they were still,
Those beasts who had once been so gay.
And compassion stirred her fair breast
So she stroked them all, as they lay.
She spoke to each animal there
In a voice that was silv’ry and sweet.
She bade them go back to their lairs,
So they left on their well-wearied feet.
She dived again into the pool.
And as dawn touched the dim, eastern sky,
She vanished, forever, from view
For in daylight, such beings die.