Over the gate she leaned, waiting for him,
Deep in the hedge where winter berries hung.
Thorned briars, forged by vanished summer, swung
With menace in the wind. The light was dim,
Fading away along the southern rim
Of the heavy sky. Over the gate she flung
Her shawl, and leaned upon the topmost rung,
Her warm hand resting on a gaunt oak limb.
The hoarfrost melted, trickling down the bark.
Daylight waned; the settling rime fell deep
On bar, on stone, and branch. It touched her hair
With reverend age, and in the gathering dark
Her love-flushed cheeks faded. Winter sleep
Silenced the ruffled birds. She waited there.