Read AT BAIA of Hymen , free online book, by Hilda Doolittle, on

I should have thought in a dream you would have brought some lovely, perilous thing, orchids piled in a great sheath, as who would say (in a dream) I send you this, who left the blue veins of your throat unkissed.

Why was it that your hands (that never took mine) your hands that I could see drift over the orchid heads so carefully, your hands, so fragile, sure to lift so gently, the fragile flower stuff ah, ah, how was it

You never sent (in a dream) the very form, the very scent, not heavy, not sensuous, but perilous perilous of orchids, piled in a great sheath, and folded underneath on a bright scroll some word:

Flower sent to flower;
for white hands, the lesser white,
less lovely of flower leaf,


Lover to lover, no kiss,
no touch, but forever and ever this.