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Short poem

Christina Rossetti (1830-1894)


              1Does the road wind up-hill all the way?
              2      Yes, to the very end.
              3Will the day's journey take the whole long day?
              4      From morn to night, my friend.

              5But is there for the night a resting-place?
              6      A roof for when the slow dark hours begin.
              7May not the darkness hide it from my face?
              8      You cannot miss that inn.

              9Shall I meet other wayfarers at night?
            10      Those who have gone before.
            11Then must I knock, or call when just in sight?
            12      They will not keep you standing at that door.

            13Shall I find comfort, travel-sore and weak?
            14      Of labour you shall find the sum.
            15Will there be beds for me and all who seek?
            16      Yea, beds for all who come.


1] It was this lyric that first drew favourable public attention to Christina Rossetti's poetry.

Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: Macmillan's Magazine (Feb. 1861). AP 4 M2 ROBA AP M337 MICR mfm. Text from Christina Rossetti, Poems (1890).
First publication date: 1861
RPO poem editor: Margaret Frances (Sister St. Francis) Nims
RP edition: 3RP 3.304.
Recent editing: 2:2002/3/14

Composition date: June 1858
Rhyme: abab

Other poems by Christina Rossetti