Verse > Anthologies > > Arthur Quiller-Couch, ed. > The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse
Arthur Quiller-Couch, comp.  The Oxford Book of Victorian Verse.  1922.
The Watcher
By James Stephens (1882–1950)
A ROSE for a young head,
A ring for a bride,
Joy for the homestead
Clean and wide—
  Who ’s that waiting        5
  In the rain outside?
A heart for an old friend,
A hand for the new:
Love can to earth lend
Heaven’s hue—        10
  Who ’s that standing
  In the silver dew?
A smile for the parting,
A tear as they go,
God’s sweethearting        15
Ends just so—
  Who ’s that watching
  Where the black winds blow?
He who is waiting
In the rain outside,        20
He who is standing
Where the dew drops wide,
He who is watching
In the wind must ride
  (Tho’ the pale hands cling)        25
  With the rose
  And the ring
  And the bride,
    Must ride
With the red of the rose,        30
And the gold of the ring,
And the lips and the hair of the bride.

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