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By Christina Rossetti

My heart is like a singing bird

                  Whose nest is in a water’d shoot;

My heart is like an apple-tree

                  Whose boughs are bent with thickset fruit;

My heart is like a rainbow shell

                  That paddles in a halcyon sea;

My heart is gladder than all these

                  Because my love is come to me.


Raise me a dais of silk and down;

                  Hang it with vair and purple dyes;

Carve it in doves and pomegranates,

                  And peacocks with a hundred eyes;

Work it in gold and silver grapes,

                  In leaves and silver fleurs-de-lys;

Because the birthday of my life

                  Is come, my love is come to me.


Poet Bio

Christina Rossetti was born in London to an artistic family — her brother was the famous poet and painter Dante Gabriel Rossetti and her house was a regular meeting place for the group of artists later called the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. As a devout Anglican, Rossetti called off a two-year engagement when her fiancé converted to Roman Catholicism. Despite a lifetime of illness, Rossetti continued to write poetry. Today she is best known for her collection Goblin Market and Other Poems.

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