Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Bitter the Pain and Long the Years

A Ballad of Hallowe'en
by Theodosia Garrison


All night the wild wind on the heath
Whistled its song of vague alarms;
All night in some mad dance of death
The poplars tossed their naked arms.

Mignon Isa hath left her bed
And bared her shoulders to the blast;
The long procession of the dead
Stared at her as it passed.

"Oh, there, methinks, my mother smiled,
And there my father walks forlorn,
And there the little nameless child
That was the parish scorn.

"And there my olden comrades move,
And there my sister smiles apart,
But nowhere is the fair, false love
That bent and broke my heart.

"Oh, false in life, oh, false in death,
Wherever thy mad spirit be,
Could it not come this night," she saith,
"To keep a tryst with me!"

Mignon Isa hath turned alone,
Bitter the pain and long the years;
The moonlight on the cold gravestone
Was warmer than her tears.

All night the wild wind on the heath
Whistled its song of vague alarms;
All night in some mad dance of death
The poplars tossed their naked arms.

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