Isabel Ecclestone Mackay

(25 November 1875 – 15 August 1928 / Canada)

Perhaps - Poem by Isabel Ecclestone Mackay

THERE was a man, once, and a woman
Whose love was so entire
That an angel, watching them,
Said wistfully, 'Would I were no angel
But a mortal,
Loving so, and so beloved!'
. . . . Yet, when these two mated,
A muddied drop, from some forgotten vial of ancestry,
Brought them a child whose mind was dark;
Who lived--and never called them by their names . . .
. . . . They tended her
For twenty years.
Only when she died
Did they weep, whispering,
The years could find no answer,
Though they went questioning
Until the end.

. . . . . . .

Still wondering
They wandered out into the other country . . . .
It was lonely there,
Being parted from familiar things,
And there was no one to answer questions,
But, suddenly,
(As a wind blows or a swallow flies against the sun)
Came a young girl--eager!
She ran to them,
Calling dear names,
(Names that would open heaven)
'Who are you?' they entreated, trembling . . . .
But they knew!--
Had they not dreamed her so
For twenty years?

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Poem Submitted: Monday, September 6, 2010

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