"They wove bright fables in the days of old,|
When reason borrowed fancy's painted wings;
When truth's clear river flowed o'er sands of gold,
And told in song its high and mystic things!
And such the sweet and solemn tale of her
The pilgrim heart, to whom a dream was given,
That led her through the world,- Love's worshipper,-
To seek on earth for him whose home was heaven!
"In the full city,- by the haunted fount,-
Through the dim grotto's tracery of spars,-
'Mid the pine temples, on the moonlit mount,
Where silence sits to listen to the stars;
In the deep glade where dwells the brooding dove,
The painted valley, and the scented air,
She heard far echoes of the voice of Love,
And found his footsteps' traces everywhere.
"But nevermore they met! since doubts and fears,
Those phantom shapes that haunt and blight the earth,
Had come 'twixt her, a child of sin and tears,
And that bright spirit of immortal birth;
Until her pining soul and weeping eyes
Had learned to seek him only in the skies;
Till wings unto the weary heart were given,
And she became Love's angel bride in heaven!"
by T. K. Harvey
The story of Cupid and Psyche first appears in the works of Apuleius, a writer of the second century of our era (The most pleasant and delectable tale of the marriage of Cupid and Psyche). Psyche, a princess so beautiful that the goddess Venus became jealous and ordered her son, Cupid, to make Psyche fall in love with the ugliest man in the world. Instead, Cupid fell in love with Psyche, but he forbade her from looking upon his face. When Psyche was tempted to look on his face while he slept, a drop of oil from her lamp awakened him. Sorrowed by her lack of faith and her suspicions, Cupid abandoned her. They were eventually reunited, and she was made immortal by the god Jupiter. Thus were united both heaven and earth, and heart and soul. Their child was called Pleasure.
Read"Ode to Psyche" by John Keats
The Abduction of Psyche by Adolph Bouguereau