Walter de la Mare

(1873 - 1958 / Kent / England)

Ghost


'Who knocks? ' 'I, who was beautiful
Beyond all dreams to restore,
I from the roots of the dark thorn am hither,
And knock on the door.'

'Who speaks? ' 'I -- once was my speech
Sweet as the bird's on the air,
When echo lurks by the waters to heed;
'Tis I speak thee fair.'

'Dark is the hour!' 'Aye, and cold.'
'Lone is my house.' 'Ah, but mine? '
'Sight, touch, lips, eyes gleamed in vain.'
'Long dead these to thine.'

Silence. Still faint on the porch
Brake the flames of the stars.
In gloom groped a hope-wearied hand
Over keys, bolts, and bars.

A face peered. All the grey night
In chaos of vacancy shone;
Nought but vast sorrow was there --
The sweet cheat gone.

Submitted: Tuesday, March 30, 2010

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