The Ballad of Dead Ladies
The Complete Poetical Works of Dante Gabriel Rossetti, ed. William M. Rossetti (Boston: Roberts Brothers, 1887): 237-38. Internet Archive
1Tell me now in what hidden way is
2 Lady Flora the lovely Roman?
3Where's Hipparchia, and where is Thais,
4 Neither of them the fairer woman?
5 Where is Echo, beheld of no man,
6Only heard on river and mere, --
7 She whose beauty was more than human? ...
8But where are the snows of yester-year?
9Where's Héloise, the learned nun,
10 For whose sake Abeillard, I ween,
11Lost manhood and put priesthood on?
12 (From Love he won such dule and teen!)
13 And where, I pray you, is the Queen
14Who willed that Buridan should steer
15 Sewed in a sack's mouth down the Seine? ...
16But where are the snows of yester-year?
17White Queen Blanche, like a queen of lilies,
18 With a voice like any mermaiden, --
19Bertha Broadfoot, Beatrice, Alice,
20 And Ermengarde the lady of Maine, --
21 And that good Joan whom Englishmen
22At Rouen doomed and burned her there, --
23 Mother of God, where are they then? ...
24But where are the snows of yester-year?
25Nay, never ask this week, fair lord,
26 Where they are gone, nor yet this year,
27Except with this for an overword, --
28 But where are the snows of yester-year?
RPO poem Editors:
Data entry: Sharine Leung