Waiting In The Dusk

Sitting alone in the twilight time,
Alas! how silent the old house seems
Kissing the voices that only chime
In waking fancies or sleeping dreams!
I sit in my mother's old arm-chair,
But where are the others? Ah where? ah where?

Where is our Willie, so grave and wise?
And where is Harry, so true and bold?
Where is Mabel with laughing eyes,
And tresses sprinkled with molten gold?
On Willie's tombstone the moss is gray,
And Harry is sleeping in Biscay Bay.

But Mabel? Mabel may come again:
Her name is still in my daily prayer;
Yet when I stand where our dead are lain,
I'd rather that it were written there.
They heard God call them, and they obeyed;
But Earth called Mabel—and Mabel strayed.

Yet while God spares, it is not too late
To turn away from the Tempter's smile;
And so in the lonely house I wait,
Because I expect her all the while:
If strangers mot her the day she came,
She might go back to her sin and shame.

I can see the city lie far away,
A sloping path from our house leads down;
And surely, surely, some summer day,
A fading woman will leave the town,
And climb the hill, and traverse the moor,
And enter in at my open door.

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