Fitfully beating the window pane:
Creeping in pools across the street;
Clinging in slush to dainty feet;
Shrouding in black the sun at noon;
Wrapping a pall about the moon.
Out in the darkness, sobbing, sighing,
Yonder, where the dead are lying,
Over mounds with headstones gray,
And new ones made but yesterday___
Weeps the rain above the mould,
Weeps the night-rain, sad and cold.
The low wind wails___a voice of pain,
Fit to chime with the weeping rain.
Dirge-like, solemn, it sinks and swells.
Till I start and listen for tolling bells,
And let them toll___the summer fled,
Wild winds and rain bewail the dead.
And yet not dead. A prophesy
Over wintry wastes comes down to me,
Strong, exultant, floating down
Over frozen fields and forests brown,
Clear and sweet it peals and swells,
Like New Year chimes from midnight bells.
It tells of a heart with life aglow,
Throbbing under the shrouding snow,
Beating, beating with pulses warm,
While roars above it the gusty storm.
Asleep___not dead___your grief is vain,
Wild, wailing winds, November rain.
Gray, cold and gray
Is the desolate wintry sky.
As the colorless daylight fades away
And the starless night draws nigh,
I sit in my darkened room
By the fire,___it is burning low,
While fancy weaves in her pauseless loom,
And swift and silent, amid the gloom.
Her shuttle glides to and fro.
Sad, sombre and sad
Is the web that she weaves to-night4
And it wraps my soul as the world is clad
In the desolate evening light.
Strange is this nameless sorrow!
I weep, and I scarce know why
It is the frown of some dark to-morow
What looms above me and I must borrow
Grief from by and by?
__Ellen P. Allerton.
Walls of Corn and Other Poems
Ellen P. Allerton
(Hiawatha, KS: Harrington Printing Company. 1894)