Page:All quiet along the Potomac and other poems.djvu/221

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AT LAST. 215

And he ll come back." Then watches still, Through harvest-time, through frost and snow.

" Train from the West !" The father s face

Is full of hope as still he peers Along the line of flitting forms, As he has done so many years.

No woman s beauty wins his glance,

Fair tho it be and smiling sweet ; No white-haired man, or little child,

Looks up his eager glance to meet.

But bearded faces young and brown,

He scans each one. The crowd has passed,

And still the old man keeps his place To see the laggard who. is last.

There is a catch of in-drawn breath, An old face eager, white, and wild,

As nearer comes the traveller,

Until they meet father and child !

A sturdy shoulder holds the head

All silver white. The lips are dumb

At first ; then trembling fall the words, " My lad at last ! I knew you d come !"

No dreamer s story made of mist I ve threaded into beads of rhyme ;

The tale is true as tryst of star,

Or promised grain of summer-time.

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