ONE grief there is, the helpmeet of my heart,
That shall not from me till my days be sped,
That walks beside me in sunshine and in shade,
And hath in all my fortunes equal part.
At first I feared it, and would often start
Aghast to find it bending o′er my bed,
Till usage slowly dulled the edge of dread,
And one cold night I cried: _How warm thou art!_
Since then we two have travelled hand in hand,
And, lo, my grief has been interpreter
For me in many a fierce and alien land
Whose speech young Joy had failed to understand,
Plucking me tribute of red gold and myrrh
From desolate whirlings of the desert sand.