by Arthur Christoper Benson
I dreamed that I was dead, and smiling lay
Glad as a child, that wakens in the dawn,
And sees, across the dewy glimmering lawn
The light that brings some longed-for holiday.
So this was all, I said, and death is o'er;
The shadow that has lain across the years
Is safely passed, and I have done with fears,
And I am glad and free for evermore!
Then with small joyous laughter I addressed
My heart to peace and wonder, when a flame
Of terror seized my spirit, mournful pain;
Dull sadnesses that would not let me rest;
And through dim labyrinths of sleep I came
Back to the cruel day, back to my chain.