The Requital

LOUD roared the tempest,
 Fast fell the sleet;
A little Child Angel
 Passed down the street,
With trailing pinions
 And weary feet.
 
The moon was hidden;
 No stars were bright;
So she could not shelter
 In heaven that night,
For the Angels’ ladders
 Are rays of light.
 
She beat her wings
 At each windowpane,
And pleaded for shelter,
 But all in vain;—
“Listen,” they said,
 “To the pelting rain!”
 
She sobb’d, as the laughter
 And mirth grew higher,
“Give me rest and shelter
 Beside your fire,
And I will give you
 Your heart’s desire.”
 
The dreamer sat watching
 His embers gleam,
While his heart was floating
 Down hope’s bright stream;
…So he wove her wailing
 Into his dream.
 
The worker toil’d on,
 For his time was brief;
The mourner was nursing
 Her own pale grief;
They heard not the promise
 That brought relief.
 
But fiercer the tempest
 Rose than before,
When the Angel paus’d
 At a humble door,
And ask’d for shelter
 And help once more.
 
A weary woman,
 Pale, worn, and thin,
With the brand upon her
 Of want and sin,
Heard the Child Angel
 And took her in:
 
Took her in gently,
 And did her best
To dry her pinions;
 And made her rest
With tender pity
 Upon her breast.
 
When the eastern morning
 Grew bright and red,
Up the first sunbeam
 The Angel fled;
Having kiss’d the woman
 And left her—dead.

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Adelaide Anne Procter

Adelaide Anne Procter was an English poet and philanthropist. more…

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"The Requital" Poetry.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2019. Web. 14 Nov. 2019. <https://www.poetry.net/poem/209/the-requital>.

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