Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Mead in the Bottle

It's about time for some news you can use.

Today's topic is mead-making.

To make a bit of mead, you need: some honey, some water, a bit of yeast, & lots of time.

My own method is a bit more lengthy, but this works well for a single bottle.

First of all, avoid sulfides. If the bottle you have states on it, "Contains sulfides," this is unacceptable.

These sulfides are the product of metabisulfites of potassium or sodium. If you've never been around it, this stuff can lay you out cold if you catch a good whiff of it. It's used as a preservative and a sanitizer, and it's particularly caustic.

It also gives you headaches in the morning.

So, if the bottle says, "Contains sulfides," you need to get rid of them. Rinse the bottle out really good, and look through the top into the bottom to make sure there's no residue. You can cook the bottle in an oven on a low heat for a bit to sanitize it.

Here's a verified procedure for a 750 ml bottle.

Take about 2 cups of water and boil it for 20 minutes (with a lid over low heat, so you end up with near the same volume). In this operation, you're sanitizing the water and releasing chlorides. You don't want any chlorine in your final product (although certain chlorides are desirable-- long story, and I'm not going into it here).

When that water has gone its time, dump 1 cup of honey into the water. Stir it up, and let it cool. Filling a sink with cold water and setting the pan into it works well. You need a thermometer to make sure that it's below 80F (26C) before proceeding to the next step. (I like mine to be a bit below 70F)

Now, get all that into your 750 ml bottle, and put a bit of yeast on it. You want the bottle to be about 2/3 full at this point.

For yeast, it's better to bake with brewer's yeast than to brew with baker's yeast. Liquid yeast runs about $8 a pack, and it's enough to give you 5 gallons (19L). Dry yeast costs around 47¢ a packet, and about enough to give half that amount. The liquid has more variety, but the dry does just fine. Use half a packet if you go for the dry.

After you get your yeast into the bottle, wrap the top with a bit of foil. Put a balloon over it, or a plastic bag. Anything to keep things from falling into the stuff; and we're talking about a microbiology level here.

Store it in a place with a stable temperature, and the colder the better, at least down to 64F (17C) or so. (Mine is kept at 68F)

It will foam up quite a bit for a few days, and then the foam will fall in. That foam is your 'krausen,' and that's why you fill the bottle only halfway full to begin with.

After the krausen has fallen, boil up a bit more water, cool it down, and fill your fermentation vessel up to about a thumb's breadth from the top.

When it's done, the yeast will drop out (flocculate), and the liquid will be bright and clear. That tells you it's time to do away with the foil and cap the stuff, chill it, and imbibe.

But don't get too excited. It's going to take a month-and-a-half to two months to do it.

Now, there's a lot more to it that what I've told you, but I've told you right.

The honey is better not boiled, and it helps to cool the boiling water. It needs to stay above 170F for 10 minutes to sanitize it.

More attention should be paid to following the instructions than questioning them.

For yeast, there's Lalvin and Red Star which are readily available at any brew shop or online distributor. A white wine yeast works best.

I was going to publish this recipe for the gruit which flavored Queen Elizabeth's mead, but now I've taken a mood. Maybe in the comments somewhere.

EDIT: And I had forgotten this earlier, but honey is deficient in magnesium, which the yeast needs in trace amounts to ensure proper growth. If you have tap water or well water, then you have plenty of magnesium already. If you're using filtered or distilled water, two to three grains of epsom salts is essential to ensure proper attenuation.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

The Zippo Deity

“My God is a super-badass. He can shoot fire out of his fingertips.”

“Oh, yeah! Well, my God is even more badass than that. He wouldn’t go for that cheap Vegas crap. My God created matches.”

“Oh, yeah! Well, my God is even more badass than that. My God has wooden matches, and He can make fire even in the rain!

“Oh, yeah! Well, my God makes yours look weak. My God has a Bic, and it always lights on the first strike.”

“Oh, yeah! Well, my God makes yours look stupid and backwards. My God has a Zippo, and he can just refill it even after your god’s silly Bic has run out.”

That’s really cool.

So, maybe if, say, one day, you’re waiting around in Heaven somewhere, hanging out in the smoking section, you can say, “Hey, God! Let me see that Zippo over here a minute.”

Sunday, July 4, 2010

The Consul at Sunset

This is a piece which has been particularly influential. I don't care to elaborate at present.

It does have an interesting backstory, mind you. But I don't care to go into all that either. (too early)

Just for your enjoyment, presented as it is.

The artist is Jack Bruce. It's from the Harmony Row album (last song, side two). Pete Brown lyrics. Chris Spedding guitars.

Though the fireflies laugh in the dusk light
It's the Festival of Death
Crowd is all laughter, it's hollow
They may kill death tonight
But they still live beneath the volcano
Won't be so many more days
Isn't much time and
It's gathering darkness, my friend.

Saturday, May 15, 2010


European lagers are generally divided into three classes— pale (pilsner, Dortmunder, & helles), amber (Vienna, Märzen, & Oktoberfest), and dark (dunkel & schwartz).

It is common to see the abbreviation “VMO” in brewing literature when referring to the German amber lagers.

The helles, Märzen, Oktoberfest, and dunkel are all associated with the city of Munich, but Vienna plays an integral role in the development of the VMO.

Ray Daniels explains:
From its beginnings as a Roman outpost, Vienna struggled along for many centuries before becoming a city in its own right during the thirteenth century. The first brewery— associated with a hospital— was noted not long after, in 1296. For several centuries after this, beer was the underdog in a running battle with wine. Grapes grow well in the Vienna area, and the landed parties who produced wine demanded protection of their product from the competition posed by beer. It was not until the sixteenth century that brewing was widely licensed to convents, castles, towns, and marketplaces.

By 1732, fourteen breweries operated near Vienna. They produced one or two types of oat beer, three varieties of wheat beer, and five varieties of barley beer.
Gabriel Sedlmayr was a brewer from Munich that toured England in the early 19th century. At that time, the English brewers had developed more technologically advanced methods than were in use on the continent. Sedlmayr is credited with bring the use of the thermometer and hydrometer to German brewers as a result of this trip.
It was the professional relationship between Sedlmayr and Vienna’s Anton Dreher that gave rise to the Vienna lager style.

Dreher came from a brewing family and studied with Sedlmayr in Munich as a young man before taking over the family brewery in Vienna. Early along, Dreher combined the Munich bottom-fermentation yeast with Vienna malts and brewing procedures to create the Vienna style of lager. The Märzen style produced in the same breweries was nothing more than a stronger version of the Vienna brew.

It appears that the Munich Oktoberfest style was an imitation of the Viennese Märzen beer. Interestingly enough, it was Gabriel Sadlmayr’s son who is credited with brewing the first Vienna-style Oktoberfest beer. [This was in 1872-- M.]
Dreher introduced Vienna lager in 1841. By the 1870’s, Vienna beers had won great acclaim. There were three distinctive styles of Vienna lager at this time— Abzug, a low-gravity variety roughly 3/4 the strength of the standard; Lager, which refers to Vienna lager roughly as we know it today; and Märzen, a slightly stronger version of the lager. There is one brewery that also produced a Doppelmärzen, which was stronger still. The primary difference between these styles was the gravity.

The Viennese brewers used a decoction mash, after the German tradition. This is a step-mash, where the temperatures are raised to engage enzyme activity through a succession of temperature ranges. In a decoction mash, the grist is drawn off of the mash, boiled, then returned to the mash. It’s a bit tricky, and there are certain formulae to follow as to raise the temperature of such-and-such volume at such-and-such density by so-many degrees by such-and-such volume of a boil; the boil being the constant (212F).

Wahl & Henius reported in 1908 that the Vienna beers are hopped at a rate of
30 percent less than those for Bohemian beers, about 30 percent more than those for Bavarian beers.
The hops were mainly Czech Saaz and Styrian Golding.

Now, the truly distinctive part of the Vienna lager is in the malt. This is a pale malt that is kilned a bit higher than other pale malts, which gives it a bit of toasty, nutty flavor. A good Vienna lager is a malt-forward type of beer.

A Viennese brewer by the name of Santigo Graf brought the style to Mexico in the 1880’s. It is from the Mexican brewers that the style is most evident today. Negro Modelo is considered the standard of the style, although the Dos Equis amber is a much better beer, IMHO. The Schell Firebrick, from New Ulm, Minnesota, is a step above the Dos Equis.

These are the tasting notes from the GABF:
Beers in this category are reddish brown or copper colored. They are medium in body. The beer is characterized by malty aroma and slight malt sweetness. The malt aroma and flavor should have a notable degree of toasted and/or slightly roasted malt character. Hop bitterness is clean and crisp. Noble-type hop aromas and flavors should be low or mild. Fruity esters, diacetyl, and chill haze should not be perceived.
The BJCP has more detailed notes:
Aroma: Moderately rich German malt aroma (of Vienna and/or Munich malt). A light toasted malt aroma may be present. Similar, though less intense than Oktoberfest. Clean lager character, with no fruity esters or diacetyl. Noble hop aroma may be low to none. Caramel aroma is inappropriate.
Appearance: Light reddish amber to copper color. Bright clarity. Large, off-white, persistent head.
Flavor: Moderately rich German malt aroma (of Vienna and/or Munich malt). A light toasted malt aroma may be present. Similar, though less intense than Oktoberfest. Clean lager character, with no fruity esters or diacetyl. Noble hop aroma may be low to none. Caramel aroma is inappropriate.
Mouthfeel: Medium-light to medium body, with a gentle creaminess. Moderate carbonation. Smooth. Moderately crisp finish. May have a bit of alcohol warming.
Overall Impression: Moderately rich German malt aroma (of Vienna and/or Munich malt). A light toasted malt aroma may be present. Similar, though less intense than Oktoberfest. Clean lager character, with no fruity esters or diacetyl. Noble hop aroma may be low to none. Caramel aroma is inappropriate.
Comments: American versions can be a bit stronger, drier and more bitter, while European versions tend to be sweeter. Many Mexican amber and dark lagers used to be more authentic, but unfortunately are now more like sweet, adjunct-laden American Dark Lagers.
It should be noted that the modern Märzenbiers are derived from the Munich interpretation of the style. The shift occurred at some time between 1955 and 1970.

Now, there is a forum that I frequent which focuses on brewing, and that’s sort of what this is about, really. (Never let it be said that I failed to provide sufficient background information.) There was a fellow there looking for a recipe for a Vienna lager, something along the lines of Brooklyn lager or Short’s Noble Chaos. I happened to have made a Vienna lager that received very good reviews, and so I posted the recipe there.

Now, the fellow that lives upstairs from me is a chef that writes a column on food and beer pairings. We sometimes trade beer and food back and forth. He said that this was my best one yet. He said that it should be sold commercially, but I am content with a small production. (I have other things I do for business.)

Vienna lager
This was a step-mash (122, 144, 152, 162) with a kölsch yeast. It came out a bit stronger than I had intended due to the mash efficiency.

The backbone is the Vienna malt, with a bit of two-row for the increased enzyme activity for the mash. Victory is the American version of the Belgian biscuit malt. It is included here to provide a bit more toasty, nut-like complexity. The caramel malt, crystal 120, has a warm, pleasant toastiness to it. So, the malt bill is all about toastiness.

Perle is a German hop that has a bright evergreen flavor. Spalt is a noble hop, the one used in Budweiser, and it has a strong flavor for a noble hop. Mount Hood is also a noble hop, but is much softer than Spalt. Perle for bittering, Spalt for flavor, and Mt. Hood for aroma. That's the hop schedule.

Exactly as George Fix phrased it:
elegance and softness as well as a measure of complexity.
A fine beer, indeed.

Another fellow at the forum saw the recipe there, and decided to try his hand at it. He modified the original a bit, including some muscovado sugar and some malt extract, adding more bittering hops, and used a Trappist yeast. He aged it in an oaken barrel. This appears more like the historical Märzen to me than a Vienna lager, though the Belgian yeasts are known for high ester production (It’s the esters that’s the real difference between an ale and a lager.)

Richie's Vienna Belgian
He was so pleased with it that he sent me a couple of bottles to thank me for the recipe. These are my trophies.

This the first time that anyone else has ever used one of my recipes, that I know of. I keep trying to push my extract recipe for a Southern English brown ale (SEBA), but most people that brew tend to like enormous amounts of hops rather than something heavily malty with low hops.

Here are some photos with my crappy cell phone cam:

My own Vienna lager alongside the trophies from an admirer.

I will enjoy this beer while I watch Mr. Deeds Goes to Town this evening.

I do wish you could enjoy one of these beers with me. I hope you have enjoyed the history, and that it made you thirsty for something darkly malty.

(And a big ‘Hello!’ to Lindsay along the Danube. I hope you have time to find something a bit more authentic than my humble brew on your journey.)

Friday, April 30, 2010

Notes on Equity of Judgment

“Equity is the most fundamental among human virtues. The evaluation of all things must needs depend upon it....
“Observe equity in your judgment, ye men of understanding heart! He that is unjust in his judgment is destitute of the characteristics that distinguish man’s station.”

——Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh

I am reminded of a time not too long ago.

There was an occasion when there was a fellow from some Tea Party protest at some strip mall. The owner of the place was by-and-large unconcerned with the political views expressed, but was mindful of the disposition of his patrons. The Tea Party gathering was allowed to continue, provided they not become too disruptive, and the security kept an eye on them there.

Then one fellow got the idea that he’d like to have a burger, so he went over to a sidewalk café there-- just one lone fellow, no milling about. The problem is that he was wearing a t-shirt that said, “Give me Liberty-- Not Obama.” The security people came over to talk to him about it, and asked if he would turn his t-shirt inside out while he remained at the establishment, so as not to offend the other diners. He refused, and was subsequently arrested.

The big to-do was all about some peaceful citizen exercising his right to assemblage, when all of a sudden some jack-booted Nazi rent-a-cop comes over and waylays the guy.

But from my view, I can see that the owner of this shopping center has rights. The patrons are there as guests. When you get right down to it, each of the businesses there are as well.

But most of the people didn’t see it that way.

I took a lot of heat over that.

Because it wasn’t a Tea Party gathering at all, you see. This was a protest against the war in Iraq. It was a mall in Long Island, and the fellow was Don Zirkel. He was 80 years old and in a wheelchair, so (as the argument goes) he is free to do whatever he wants and any action from the authorities to modify the unabated expression of his freewill is particularly egregious.

The t-shirt had two words on it-- “Dead” and “Enough,” and there were the death tolls for the American soldiers there as well as the Iraqi civilians. There were three large red splotches made to look like blood on this shirt. The thing was intended to be shocking and provocative.

But because this is all about the Iraq War, then anyone that didn’t take exception to this action by the security officers was supposedly all sorts of morally corrupt, as well as mentally incompetent, etc.

Back then, everyone believed that as soon as a Democrat would come into office, someone would walk over to him and hand him a magic wand, which he would wave around a few times, and then all of a sudden all of the servicemen in the Middle East would magically reappear state-side, just fine and dandy. They knew it so much, it didn’t do much good to tell them otherwise. Anyone (like me) that might have the audacity to say, “You know, you’re probably going to be needing a bit of a position on something, other than just being against the Iraq War, in order to govern,” was just laughed off. (This was well before the big health care debate, btw.)

And wouldn’t you know it, now these same people find it particularly amusing to go around referring to the Tea Party activists as “tea baggers.” I just find it sad that so many would take such great pleasure in being so blatantly juvenile (my feelings toward both sides).

It reminds me of the saying that a communist’s greatest fear is that other communists who are his enemies will come into power.

Those people didn’t hate Geo. W. Bush, no matter how much they may say so. They may disagree with his policies, but really, in their hearts, they want to be just like him.

Now, in this particular instance that I refer to, there was some fellow, well-known for being a half-cocked loudmouth, that made some outrageous statement that Armani’s had pulled out of a deal to open a store at that mall because of the treatment of this poor, poor Iraq war protester.

It sounded like a bunch of crap to me. A lie well-received is a lie nevertheless.

So, I called the mall, and spoke to the people in the office there (the leasing office is located elsewhere, and yes, I did speak to them too). No one knew anything about an Armani’s.

So I called an Armani’s out on Long Island. They told me that there were only two Armani’s on all of Long Island, and there weren’t any plans to open another one. I suppose there’s only so many $400 pairs of slacks that can be sold to one population group (that's a sale price from the outlet mall, btw).

So, I call the guy on it. “Look, you’re lying.”

Of course, this makes me the bad guy.

I happened to tell the truth in a place where the truth was unwelcome. I have a way of doing that. It’s a curse that has followed me all of my life.

To be fair, Georgio Armani is very active in relief efforts for refugees. He also has a really big hotel in Dubai. But I don’t think the man got where he is by making business decisions flying off the cuff, or on something as inconsequential as the arrest of some war protester. It takes a lot of money and a lot of planning to open a store of any kind. There’s a lot of research that goes into it. And although I may be incorrect in my assessment, I feel inclined to give Mr. Armani a bit of credit here-- I don’t think the man’s a dumb-ass.

But some people feel inclined to believe that I’m a dumb-ass that they can tell any wild tale to, and I have an obligation to buy into it, or I’m a bad guy.

Sometimes I would rather be the bad guy.

I can live with myself a lot better that way.

And now, I would like to call your attention to that little scrap of scripture at the top of the post; to two phrases in particular. Take a few moments and consider, if you will, what exactly is “man’s station,” and what manner of things might “distinguish” that? And what do you suppose it means to be “destitute of [those] characteristics?”

Thursday, April 22, 2010


I just came back from pulling a raccoon out of a dumpster. Still kind of shaken by it.

I don't know how it was that I came to specialize in raccoon extraction, but I'm pretty good at it.

That one was a fighter though. She almost got me.

I had a bit of trouble getting a good handle on her, and she kept snapping at my stick. I got my foot on top of her head; not stepping on her, but touching her, making contact. It was over pretty quick after that.

She wasn't too happy when I dropped her on the ground. They never are.

She took off, but kind of slow. I'm wondering if she was injured in some way.

Not starving, by any means. She went off through a hole in the fence, barely big enough to slip through.

That one was too close though. It took longer than I expected. I must be getting slow as I grow older.

No photos though. I didn't think about that until after.

“Be ye the trustees of God amongst His creatures, and the emblems of His generosity amidst His people.”

Saturday, April 10, 2010

The Enchanted Garden of Barganax

This scene finds the Duke painting in the enchanted garden. It introduces Dr. Vandermast, a member of the Duke's court, a philosopher, sophist, and magician, who is gifted in returning unintelligible reply on any manner of subject (although he does not appear in this passage).


That third morning after that coming of the galloping horseman to Mornagay, Duke Barganax was painting in his privy garden in Zayana in the southland: that garden where it is everlasting afternoon. There the low sun, swinging a level course at about that pitch which Antares reaches at his highest southing in an English May-night, filled the soft air with atomies of sublimated gold, wherein all seen things became, where the beams touched them, golden: a golden sheen on the lake’s unruffled waters beyond the parapet, gold burning in the young foliage of the oak-woods that clothed the circling hills; and, in the garden, fruits of red and yellow gold hanging in the gold-spun leafy darkness of the strawberry-trees, a gilding shimmer of it in the stone of the carven bench, a gilding of every tiny blade on the shaven lawn, a glow to deepen all colours and to ripen every sweetness: gold faintly warming the proud pallour of Fiorinda’s brow and cheek, and thrown back in sudden gleams from the jet-black smoothness of her hair.
‘Would you be ageless and deathless for ever, madam, were you given that choice?’ said the Duke, scraping away for the third time the colour with which he had striven to match, for the third time unsuccessfully, the unearthly green of that lady’s eyes.
‘I am this already’ answered she with unconcern....

She had not stirred; yet, to his eye now, all was altered. As some tyrannous and triumphant phrase in a symphony returns, against all expectation, hushed to starved minor harmonies or borne on the magic welling moon-notes of the horn, a shuddering tenderness, a dying flame; such-like, and so moving, was the transfiguration that seemed to have come upon that lady: her beauty grown suddenly to a thing to choke the breath, piteous like a dead child’s toys: the bloom on her cheek more precious than kingdoms, and less perdurable than the bloom on a butterfly’s wing. She was turned side-face towards him; and now, scarce to be perceived, her head moved with the faintest dim recalling of that imperial mockery of soft laughter that he knew so well; but he well saw that it was no motion of laughter now, but the gallant holding back of tears....

‘Come’ said the Duke. ‘What shall it be then? Inspire my invention. Entertain ’em all to a light collation and, by cue taken at the last kissing-cup, let split their weasands, stab ’em all in a moment? Your noble brother amongst them, ’tis to be feared, madam; since him, with a bunch of others, I am to thank for these beggar-my-neighbour sleights and cozenage beyond example. Or shall’t be a grand night-piece of double fratricide? yours and mine, spitted on one spit like a brace of woodcock? We can proceed with the first to-day: for the other, well, I’ll think on’t.’
‘Are you indeed that prince whom reputation told me of,’ said she, ‘that he which did offend you might tremble with only thinking of it? And now, as hares pull dead lions by the beard—’...

As if spell-bound under the troublous sweet hesitation of the choriambics, she listened very still. Very still, and dreamily, and with so soft an intonation that the words seemed but to take voiceless shape on her ambrosial breath, she answered, like an echo:

Once more, Love, the limb-loosener, shaketh me:
Bitter-sweet, the dread Worm ineluctable.

——E.R. Eddison

Friday, April 2, 2010

Moreno Torroba

This is one of my favorite pieces, and I’m fairly particular about it. This is the second movement, Andante, of the Sonatina in A by Frederico Moreno Torroba. It was first performed in Paris in 1925 by Andres Segovia to a private audience, which included Maurice Ravel; who, it is said, was very impressed by this work. I like the second and third movements best (the Andante and Allegro), although the first movement is definitely worthwhile.

My main complaint with this piece is that most people try to play it too fast. It doesn’t work so well like that. It’s much better played a bit behind the beat, shuffle-style, as one very long cadenza passage. If you try to play it in time, it comes out too dry. It needs to be felt from the heart, expressed tentatively.

The dynamics of the piece are very important, and this is where I have a bit of trouble with it. It’s never quite perfect, and requires a great deal of work.

Here is a video of a fellow from Eastern Michigan University playing it at a recital. It’s one of the best that I’ve heard, and I have heard quite a few. He hurries the first chord a bit (the first D in the D C D), and in a few other places. The dynamics are not observed consistently throughout. But other than that, I would call this an excellent performance; one of the best around.

The performer is Jonathan Edwards, and I’ve never heard of him before. Nevertheless, he shows great promise, and I look forward to hearing more from him in the future.

I hope that you enjoy this as much as I do. It would be a rare thing to see any better performance of this wonderful piece (unless, of course, you happen to come to visit).

I had to put this here, because the comments section would not accept it.

Here's another piece that I find I'm getting a bit particular about, and for the same reasons. I find that noteworthy because it's so ridiculously simple, it seems like it would be difficult to mess it up. But I see a lot of people butchering it. Terrible.

This one is one of this things that's sort of obligatory to the repertoire. Just about everybody does it.

I have two recordings of this one; one by Parkening (which is incredibly fast), and another by Eduardo Fernandez (who does it much better). The fellow in the video does it better than either one of them. As far as recordings, I prefer the Richard Cobo.

I really don't know as much about Brouwer as I would like. There's only a few of his pieces that I'm familiar with.

I've gotten to where I browse through these things because of all of the commercials on Pandora anymore.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


Monday, February 22, 2010


‘Now I’ve angered you,’ said Amaury. ‘And yet, I said but true.’

As a wren twinkles in and out in a hedge-row, the demurest soft shadow of laughter came and went in Lessingham’s swift grey eyes. ‘What, were you reading me good counsel? Forgive me, dear Amaury: I lost the thread on’t. You were talking of my cousin, and the great King, and might-a-beens; but I was fallen a-dreaming, and marked you not.’

——Mistress of Mistresses

Much like the wanderer Lessingham, the prose of E.R. Eddison takes me fallen a-dreaming. With much of his works, I read each paragraph through at least twice; once to enjoy the beauty of the prose, and again to take in the meaning before moving on. Eddison is, by far, my favorite author, but most of his works have been out of print for some time.

I recently acquired the Ballantine edition of the Zimiamvian trilogy (1967 — 1969). I will be sharing short excerpts on occasion as the mood strikes.

A Vision of Zimiamvia

I will have gold and silver for my delight:
      Hangings of red silk, purfled and work’d in gold
With mantichores and what worse shapes of fright
      Terror Antiquus spawn’d in the days of old.

I will have columns of Parian vein’d with gems,
      Their capitals by Pheidias’ self design’d,
By his hand carv’d, for flowers with strong smooth stems,
      Nepenthe, Elysian Amaranth, and their kind.

I will have night: and the taste of a field well fought,
      And a golden bed made wide for luxury;
And there,— since else were all things else prov’d naught,—
      Bestower and hallower of all things: I will have Thee.

—Thee, and hawthorn time. For in that new birth though all
      Change, you I will have unchang’d: even that dress,
So fall’n to your hips as lapping waves should fall:
      You, cloth’d upon with your beauty’s nakedness.

The line of your flank: so lily-pure and warm:
      The globéd wonder of splendid breasts laid bare:
The gleam, like cymbals a-clash, when you lift your arm;
      And the faun leaps out with the sweetness of red-gold hair.

My dear,— my tongue is broken: I cannot see:
      A sudden subtle fire beneath my skin
Runs, and an inward thunder deafens me,
      Drowning mine ears: I tremble. — O unpin

Those pins of anachite diamond, and unbraid
      Those strings of margery-pearls, and so let fall
Your python tresses in their deep cascade
      To be your misty robe imperial. —

The beating of wings, the gallop, the wild spate,
      Die down. A hush resumes all Being, which you
Do with your starry presence consecrate,
      And peace of moon-trod gardens and falling dew.

Two are our bodies: two are our minds, but wed.
      On your dear shoulder, like a child asleep,
I let my shut lids press, while round my head
      Your gracious hands their benediction keep.

Mistress of my delights; and Mistress of Peace:
      O ever changing, never changing, You:
Dear pledge of our true love’s unending lease,
      Since true to you means to mine own self true.—

I will have gold and jewels for my delight:
      Hyacinth, ruby, and smaragd, and curtains work’d in gold
With mantichores and what worse shapes of fright
      Terror Antiquus spawn’d in the days of old.

Earth I will have, and the deep sky’s ornament:
      Lordship, and hardship, and peril by land and sea.—
And still, about cock-shut time, to pay for my banishment,
      Safe in the lowe of the firelight I will have Thee.

——E.R. Eddison