In the night I dreamed that you had died,
And I thought you lay in your winding sheet;
And I kneeled low by your coffin side,
With my cheek on your heart that had ceased to beat.
And I thought as I looked on your form so still,
A terrible woe, and an awful pain,
Fierce as vultures that slay and kill,
Tore at my bosom and maddened my brain.
And then it seemed that the chill of death
Over me there like a mantle fell,
And I knew by my fluttering, failing breath
That the end was near, and all was well.
I woke from my dream in the black midnight--
It was only a dream at worst or best--
But I lay and thought till the dawn of light,
Had the dream been true we had both been blest.
Better to kneel by your still dead form,
With my cheek on your breast, and die that way,
Than to live and battle with night and storm,
And drift away from you day by day.
Better the anguish of death and loss,
The sharp, quick pain, and the darkness, then,
Than living on with this heavy cross
To bear about in the world of men.
Yesterdays. By Ella Wheeler Wilcox.
London: Gay & Hancock, 1916.
|Back to Poem Index|