SILVER BELLS AND COCKLE SHELLS He talks to me kindly: and there is my mother, soothing and smiling and nodding a little. He takes my hand: and there is my kitten, so soft and warm and happily purring. He lays his head in my lap: and a child, stirring in my womb, sweats with me sweetness. He unlaces my bodice to kiss my bosom: and blood and milk are one within me. He takes my mouth: and there is a wild man, staring of eye and smirched with sin. He floats me down: and in the blackness my screen is broken from roof to floor . . . O listen, my lover! My garden grows with seven little maids in lonely rows, all hung beneath with silver bells that ring to charm the cockle-shells.