He thinks her little feet should pass
Where dandelions star thickly grass;
Her hands should lift in sunlit air
Sea-wind should tangle up her hair.
Green leaves, he says, have never heard
A sweeter ragtime mockingbird,
Nor has the moon-man ever seen,
Or man in the spotlight, leering green,
Such a beguiling, smiling queen.
Her eyes, he says, are stars at dusk,
Her mouth as sweet as red-rose musk;
And when she dances his young heart swells
With flutes and viols and silver bells;
His brain is dizzy, his senses swim,
When she slants her ragtime eyes at him. . .
Moonlight shadows, he bids her see,
Move no more silently than she.
It was this way, he says, she came,
Into his cold heart, bearing flame.
And now that his heart is all on fire
Will she refuse his heart's desire?--
And O! has the Moon Man ever seen
(Or the spotlight devil, leering green)
A sweeter shadow upon a screen?
Conrad Potter Aiken