The Burning Ghat

Adown the Ganges, at your side I sat
And floated, musing on each scene and spot:
We heard the grim tale of the Buring Ghat,
We saw the place where widows once were brought
And living, cast upon the funeral pyre.
We shuddered at the story. But, today
I think it was a kind and friendly fire
That took the mourners from their grief away
A little time of terror, and despair,
A few brief tortured moments, then release
From suffering and loneliness and tears.
Oh, my Beloved! Life gives me to bear
Perpetual pyres, and flames that never cease;
A Burning Ghat of slowly dying years.

Sonnets of sorrow and triumph. by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
New York: George H. Doran, 1918.

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