Verse > Anthologies > Sara Teasdale, ed. > The Answering Voice
Sara Teasdale, comp. (1884–1933).
The Answering Voice: One Hundred Love Lyrics by Women.  1917.
A Woman’s Question
By Adelaide Anne Procter
BEFORE I trust my fate to thee,
  Or place my hand in thine,
Before I let thy future give
  Color and form to mine,—
Before I peril all for thee, question thy soul        5
      to-night, for me.
I break all slighter bonds, nor feel
  One shadow of regret:
Is there one link within the past
  That holds thy spirit yet?        10
Or is thy faith as clear and free as that which
      I can pledge to thee?…
Is there within thy heart a need
  That mine cannot fulfill?
One chord that any other hand        15
  Could better wake or still?
Speak now, lest at some future day, my whole
      life wither and decay….
Couldst thou withdraw thy hand one day,
  And answer to my claim        20
That fate, and that to-day’s mistake,
  Not thou, had been to blame?
Some soothe their conscience thus; but thou—oh,
      surely thou wilt warn me now!

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