Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. II. Love
Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume II. Love.  1904.
I. Admiration
At the Church-Gate
William Makepeace Thackeray (1811–1863)
ALTHOUGH I enter not,
Yet round about the spot
    Ofttimes I hover;
And near the sacred gate
With longing eyes I wait,        5
    Expectant of her.
The minster bell tolls out
Above the city’s rout,
    And noise and humming;
They ’ve hushed the minster bell;        10
The organ ’gins to swell;
    She ’s coming, coming!
My lady comes at last,
Timid and stepping fast,
    And hastening hither,        15
With modest eyes downcast;
She comes,—she ’s here, she ’s past!
    May Heaven go with her!
Kneel undisturbed, fair saint!
Pour out your praise or plaint        20
    Meekly and duly;
I will not enter there,
To sully your pure prayer
    With thoughts unruly.
But suffer me to pace        25
Round the forbidden place,
    Lingering a minute,
Like outcast spirits, who wait,
And see, through heaven’s gate,
    Angels within it.        30

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