Comes to my door with a beggar's tale.
Her gray eyes wander with eager desire,
(She shudders and turns from my driftwood fire)
Till her gaze is held on a lacquered tray
Etched with the shadows of a spray
Of wild plum blossom . . the tray is old,
With dragon handles of painted gold.
As she reaches a thin and bony hand,
The wind calls her with a sharp command,
And she turns away, a cowering slave,
Hurrying off to her gray sea cave;
Forgetting the plate of Chinese red
With the plum's white beauty overspread.
Contemporary Kansas Poetry
Helen Rhoda Hoopes
(Kansas City: Joseph D. Havens Company. 1927)