Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

(27 February 1807 – 24 March 1882 / Portland, Maine)

Footsteps Of Angels - Poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

When the hours of Day are numbered,
And the voices of the Night
Wake the better soul, that slumbered,
To a holy, calm delight;

Ere the evening lamps are lighted,
And, like phantoms grim and tall,
Shadows from the fitful firelight
Dance upon the parlor wall;

Then the forms of the departed
Enter at the open door;
The beloved, the true-hearted,
Come to visit me once more;

He, the young and strong, who cherished
Noble longings for the strife,
By the roadside fell and perished,
Weary with the march of life!

They, the holy ones and weakly,
Who the cross of suffering bore,
Folded their pale hands so meekly,
Spake with us on earth no more!

And with them the Being Beauteous,
Who unto my youth was given,
More than all things else to love me,
And is now a saint in heaven.

With a slow and noiseless footstep
Comes that messenger divine,
Takes the vacant chair beside me,
Lays her gentle hand in mine.

And she sits and gazes at me
With those deep and tender eyes,
Like the stars, so still and saint-like,
Looking downward from the skies.

Uttered not, yet comprehended,
Is the spirit's voiceless prayer,
Soft rebukes, in blessings ended,
Breathing from her lips of air.

Oh, though oft depressed and lonely,
All my fears are laid aside,
If I but remember only
Such as these have lived and died!


Comments about Footsteps Of Angels by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

  • Savita Tyagi (10/31/2018 7:54:00 AM)


    Always a pleasure to read. One of my favorite. (Report) Reply

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  • (9/2/2018 6:28:00 PM)


    So good to know others find comfort when the dead come to visit! (Report) Reply

  • (3/26/2018 7:45:00 PM)


    This is a terrible reading- -is this by a computer? ! Good God. It's better to have none. (Report) Reply

  • Savita Tyagi (3/13/2018 6:16:00 AM)


    A beautiful read each and every time. (Report) Reply

  • Ruta Mohapatra (10/23/2017 12:47:00 PM)


    The last stanza is a memorable one. (Report) Reply

  • Subhas Chandra Chakra (9/30/2017 3:32:00 PM)


    All my fears are laid aside,
    If I but remember only
    Such as these have lived and died!
    A lovely poem shared. Brilliant write.
    (Report) Reply

  • Sonali Ganguly (6/17/2017 5:33:00 AM)


    beautifully expressed (Report) Reply

  • Adolphus Moses (9/12/2016 7:25:00 PM)


    All my fears are laid aside... great poem. (Report) Reply

  • Igwilo Vincent Somto (3/23/2016 8:23:00 AM)


    wonderful poem (Report) Reply

  • (3/13/2016 1:36:00 PM)


    In the end - the best that can be said, is we are left with the memory of what was. (Report) Reply

  • Jane Urhobocha Ejobofor (3/6/2016 11:56:00 AM)


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    Share this poem: Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
    Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (27 February 1807 – 24 March 1882 / Portland, Maine)
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    Footsteps Of Angels - Poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

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    When the hours of Day are numbered,
    And the voices of the Night
    Wake the better soul, that slumbered,
    To a holy, calm delight;

    Ere the evening lamps are lighted,
    And, like phantoms grim and tall,
    Shadows from the fitful firelight
    Dance upon the parlor wall;

    Then the forms of the departed
    Enter at the open door;
    The beloved, the true-hearted,
    Come to visit me once more;

    He, the young and strong, who cherished
    Noble longings for the strife,
    By the roadside fell and perished,
    Weary with the march of life!

    They, the holy ones and weakly,
    Who the cross of suffering bore,
    Folded their pale hands so meekly,
    Spake with us on earth no more! .. Beautifully penned!
    (Report) Reply

  • (2/10/2016 7:30:00 PM)


    ........though hauntingly beautiful this poem has a peaceful feel ★ (Report) Reply

  • Seema Jayaraman (10/9/2015 2:59:00 AM)


    I see signs of Angels everywhere these days... in the colors of the flowers, a tiny feather floating by.. thanks for sharing.. (Report) Reply

  • Alafe Ramat (9/17/2015 7:24:00 AM)


    wonderfully written, .. a great read (Report) Reply

  • (6/23/2015 10:39:00 AM)


    Fantastic poet. All his poems are fantastic. (Report) Reply

  • Savita Tyagi (9/19/2014 8:40:00 PM)


    Love this poem with all its tenderness. (Report) Reply

  • (9/19/2013 12:36:00 PM)


    Good imagination and rhythm (Report) Reply

  • Macanthony Chijioke Nwatu (9/19/2013 5:31:00 AM)


    Wonderful imagery; well done sir! (Report) Reply

  • Babatunde Aremu (9/19/2013 3:52:00 AM)


    Very spiritual and inspiring poem. (Report) Reply

  • Okoronkwo Jackson Jonathan (9/20/2012 12:31:00 AM)


    Shall I not say that truly this is a hand of professionality. (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: dance, lonely, remember, heaven, night, sky, star, angel, fear



Poem Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002



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