Verse > Anthologies > J. C. Squire, ed. > A Book of Women’s Verse
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J. C. Squire, ed.  A Book of Women’s Verse.  1921.
 
The Visionary
By Emily Brontë (1818–1848)
 
SILENT is the house: all are laid asleep:
One alone looks out o’er the snow-wreaths deep,
Watching every cloud, dreading every breeze
That whirls the wildering drift, and bends the groaning trees.
 
Cheerful is the hearth, soft the matted floor;        5
Not one shivering gust creeps through pane or door;
The little lamp burns straight, its rays shoot strong and far:
I trim it well, to be the wanderer’s guiding star.
 
Frown, my haughty sire! chide, my angry dame;
Set your slaves to spy; threaten me with shame!        10
But neither sire nor dame, nor prying serfs shall know
What angel nightly tracks that waste of frozen snow.
 
What I love shall come like visitant of air,
Safe in secret power from lurking human snare,
What loves me, no word of mine shall e’er betray,        15
Though for faith unstained my life must forfeit pay.
 
Burn, then, little lamp; glimmer straight and clear—
Hush! a rustling wing stirs, methinks, the air:
He for whom I wait, thus ever comes to me;
Strange Power! I trust thy might; trust thou my constancy!        20
 
 
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