Read "Query" at The Eldritch Dark:
This is an extraordinarily beautiful love poem from Clark Ashton Smith (CAS), and yet it also treats of the indefinite line between love and friendship:
Fair comrade, have you found, as I,
A tremor in some troubling vein
When shoulders touch, the subtle sigh
That is not grief, that is not pain,
And vague delight in being nigh?
I'm not sure I've read a poem on this particular topic before, which is not surprising, since it's a complicated emotional space that challenges even poets. CAS pulls it off with a wonderful sensitivity, and the device of making the middle stanzas a series of questions to the other party in the relationship is highly effective. Further evidence that CAS was much more than a poet of the weird and fantastic!
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