Formation, Likeness, and Deformation

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...Soon the solemn mood
Of her pure mind kindled through all her frame
A permeating fire: wild numbers then
She raised, with voice stifled in tremulous sobs
Subdued by its own pathos: her fair hands
Were bare alone, sweeping from some strange harp
Strange symphony, and in their branching veins
The eloquent blood told an ineffable tale.

she drew back a while,
Then, yielding to the irresistible joy,
With frantic gesture and short breathless cry
Folded his frame in her dissolving arms
Now blackness veiled his dizzy eyes…

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-Alastor, 161-167, 184-188

Then by strange art she kneaded fire and snow
Together, tempering the repugnant mass
With liquid love—all things together grow
Through which the harmony of love can pass;
And a fair Shape out of her hands did flow—
A living Image, which did far surpass
In beauty that bright shape of vital stone
Which drew the heart out of Pygmalion.


-Witch of Atlas, Stanza XXXV

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A sexless thing it was, and in its growth
It seemed to have developed no defect
Of either sex, yet all the grace of both—
In gentleness and strength its limbs were decked;
The bosom swelled lightly with its full youth—
The countenance was such as might select
Some artist that his skill should never die,
Imaging forth such perfect purity.


-Witch of Atlas, Stanza XXXVI

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