Only a spar from a broken ship
    Washed in by a careless wave;
But it brought back the smile of a vanished lip,
    And his past peered out of the grave.

Only a leaf that an idle breeze
    Tossed at her passing feet;
But she seemed to stand under the dear old trees,
    And life again was sweet.

Only the bar of a tender strain
    They sang in days gone by;
But the old love woke in her heart again,
    The love they had sworn should die.

Only the breath of a faint perfume
    That floated up from a rose;
But the bolts slid back from a marble tomb,
    And I looked on a dear dead face.

Who vaunts the might of a human will,
    When a perfume or a sound
Can wake a Past that we bade lie still,
    And open a long closed wound?

Yesterdays. By Ella Wheeler Wilcox.
London: Gay & Hancock, 1916.

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