The Eve of St. Agnes: Stanza 34 - Summary

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Her eyes were open, but she still beheld,
Now wide awake, the vision of her sleep:
There was a painful change, that nigh expell’d
The blisses of her dream so pure and deep
At which fair Madeline began to weep,
And moan forth witless words with many a sigh;
While still her gaze on Porphyro would keep;
Who knelt, with joined hands and piteous eye,
Fearing to move or speak, she look’d so dreamingly.


      Madeline was now fully awake and her eyes were wide open. But it seemed that she was trying to prolong the sweet dream of her, sleep which had been interrupted. On realizing that the dream was over, she felt much grieved. The change from sleep to waking distressed her much because the pleasure and delight of that dream in which, she had seen the deep and holy love of Porphyro were now driven out of her mind. In her distress, Madeline began to sigh, to weep, and to utter incoherent words of grief and sorrow, all the time gazing at Porphyro. Porphyro was kneeling by her bed-side, with folded hands and with eyes that aked for Madeline’s pity and forgiveness. Indeed, he was afraid to move or speak because the way in which Madeline stated at his face seemed to show that she was still asleep even though her eyes were open. He, therefore, dared not disturb her. Already he had caused her so much distress and so now he became more cautious.

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