All morning while the fingers of the clock
Their leisured way,
Their awful, tantalizing, terrifying way,
Have moved, as if a rock
Sat on each moment of the day;
All morning, every long-drawn interval,
My spirit has been hovering
In apprehensive wondering,
Hovering about the hospital.
“Has it been done?” I ask, and seek
Answer in vain from my own mind;
For there I cannot find
In all its chaos, however diligently sought.
Each hour becomes a week.
At length, at length crawls noon
With its liberty.
Out, out into the air,
To meet one waiting there
Who has an equal share
Almost, and heart beats hammer strong
As with fleet feet
We seem to glide along
There, there at last ! What news will greet
Our hungry ears?
Will it dissolve our hardening fears?
How is she?
Comfortable, much as one can yet expect !
And was she –?
Did she — ? I mean, was the operation –?
Not till Thursday !
To-morrow and to-morrow and to-morrow
Grey morn succeeding morn and morn
In rank forlorn.
Our hopes, our tremulous fears
Force unashamed tears;
From burdened eyes they start,
Releasing in their fall
The stinging salt of all
The pent-up holds of heart.