Verse > Anthologies > Alfred H. Miles, ed. > Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century
Alfred H. Miles, ed.  Women Poets of the Nineteenth Century.  1907.
I. “Love Came Knocking at My Door”
By Emily Pfeiffer (1841–1890)
LOVE came knocking at my door in the flowery month of May,
’Twas the morning of the year, and the morning of the day;
            He was a winsome boy,
            And I a maiden coy,
But I followed him, I followed! for he drew me with the wile        5
Of his eyes, his words, and whispers, and the glamour of his smile.
Oh the merry laughing moments, oh the soft, the shining hours,
When I followed as he led me through his gardens and his bowers!
            Love was a thing divine,
            I was his, and he was mine;        10
So I followed him, I followed, could have followed till I died,
In the wake of his young glory, and the fulness of my pride.
Now the merry days are over, with the joy and pride and show;
Love has grown to his full stature; I am weary as I go.
            Shamed is the golden head,        15
            And the magic smile is fled
            For the dust and soil of earth
            Mock the greatness of Love’s birth;
But I follow, and if weeping I, though weeping, follow still,
With no magic and no glamour, but a faithful human will.        20
Ay, I follow still, I follow, though no longer through the May,
Though the lingering dreams of morning with the morn have passed away.
            Now Love is no more glad,
            Nay, his very smile is sad;
            But he needs me even more        25
            Than I needed him before;
So I follow, still I follow, and through all the darker seeming,
Love’s true need of me is sweeter than his smile that held me dreaming.
And when one day hand in hand we before God’s gate shall stand,
And the gate shall open wide that we enter side by side,        30
            We may gaze in glad surprise
            Into one another’s eyes,
            Not to find a winsome boy,
            Or a maiden vain and coy;
            But two creatures shining bright        35
            In the pure and keen love-light,
            Of the patience and the faith
            That have conquered more than death.
Then I follow love no longer, but I sink upon thy breast
To abide there hushed for ever in the joy of utter rest.        40

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