Expectation Poem by Adelaide Anne Procter
Poetry from Legends and Lyrics Second Series.
Adelaide Anne Procter Verse: Expectation Poem
The King’s three daughters stood on the terrace,
The hanging terrace, so broad and green,
Which keeps the sea from the marble Palace,
There was Princess May, and Princess Alice,
And the youngest Princess, Gwendoline.
Sighed Princess May, “Will it last much longer,
Time throbs so slow and my Heart so quick;
And oh, how long is the day in dying;
Weary am I of waiting and sighing,
For Hope deferred makes the spirit sick.”
But Princess Gwendoline smiled and kissed her:-
“Am I not sadder than you, my Sister?
Expecting joy is a happy pain.
The Future’s fathomless mine of treasures,
All countless hordes of possible pleasures,
Might bring their store to my feet in vain.”
Sighed Princess Alice as night grew nearer:-
“So soon, so soon, is the daylight fled!
And oh, how fast comes the dark to-morrow,
Who hides, perhaps in her veil of sorrow,
The terrible hour I wait and dread!”
But Princess Gwendoline kissed her, sighing,—
“It is only Life that can fear dying;
Possible loss means possible gain.
Those who still dread, are not quite forsaken;
But not to fear, because all is taken,
Is the loneliest depth of human pain.”