Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
By Alexander Smith (1830–1867)
THE CALLOW young were huddling in the nests,
The marigold was burning in the marsh
Like a thing dipt in sunset, when he came.
My blood went up to meet him on my face,
Glad as a child that hears its father’s step        5
And runs to meet him at the open porch.
I gave him all my being, like a flower
That flings its perfume on a vagrant breeze—
A breeze that wanders on and heeds it not.
His scorn is lying on my heart like snow,        10
My eyes are weary, and I fain would sleep:
The quietest sleep is underneath the ground.
Are ye around me, friends? I cannot see,
I cannot hear the voices that I love,
I lift my hands to you from out the night!        15
Methought I felt a tear upon my cheek.—
Weep not, my mother! It is time to rest,
And I am very weary; so, good-night!

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