At the Church Gate

  Although I enter not,
  Yet round about the spot
      Ofttimes I hover:
  And near the sacred gate,
  With longing eyes I wait,
      Expectant of her.

  The Minster bell tolls out
  Above the city's rout,
      And noise and humming:
  They've hush'd the Minster bell:
  The organ 'gins to swell:
      She's coming, she's coming!

  My lady comes at last,
  Timid, and stepping fast,
      And hastening hither,
  With modest eyes downcast:
  She comes—she's here—she's past—
      May heaven go with her!

  Kneel, undisturb'd, fair Saint!
  Pour out your praise or plaint
      Meekly and duly;
  I will not enter there,
  To sully your pure prayer
      With thoughts unruly.

  But suffer me to pace
  Round the forbidden place,
      Lingering a minute
  Like outcast spirits who wait
  And see through heaven's gate
      Angels within it.

This poem is in the public domain. 

About this Poem

From Ballads and Songs (London: Cassell and Company, 1896).