In Divers Tones

by Charles G.D. Roberts

Edited by Tracy Ware


 

THE FOOTPATH


 

Paths by which her feet have gone,
   Still you climb the windy hill,
Still the hillside fronts the dawn,
   Fronts the clustering village still.

On the bare hill-summit waves

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   Still the lonely poplar-tree.
Where the blue lake-water raves,
   Still the plover pipe and flee.

Still you climb from windy pier,
   Where the white gull drops and screams,

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Through the village grown so dear,
   Till you reach my heaven of dreams.

Ah, the place we used to meet,
   I and she,—where sharp you turn,
Shun the curious village street,

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   Lurk thro’ hollows, hide in fern!

Then, the old house, ample-eaved,
   Night-long quiet beneath the stars,—
How the maples, many-leaved,
   Screened us at the orchard bars!

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Path by which her feet have gone,
   Still you climb the windy hill;
Still the hillside fronts the dawn,
   Fronts the clustering village still;

But no longer she, my own,

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   Treads you, save as dreams allow.
And these eyes in dreams alone
   Dare to look upon you now.