Sara Teasdale, comp. (1884–1933).
The Answering Voice: One Hundred Love Lyrics by Women. 1917.

To a Late Comer

Julia C. R. Dorr

WHY didst thou come into my life so late?

If it were morning I could welcome thee

With glad all-hails, and bid each hour to be

The willing servitor of thine estate,

Lading thy brave ships with Time’s richest freight;

If it were noonday I might hope to see

On some fair height thy banners floating free,

And hear the acclaiming voices call thee great!

But it is nightfall and the stars are out;

Far in the west the crescent moon hangs low,

And near at hand the lurking shadows wait;

Darkness and silence gather round about,

Lethe’s black stream is near its overflow,—

Ah, friend, dear friend, why didst thou come so late?