by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
New paradise, and groom and bride;
The world was all their own;
Her heart swelled full of love and pride;
Yet were they quite alone?
‘Now how is it, oh how is it, and why is it’ (in fear
All silent to herself she spake) ‘that something strange seems here?’
Along the garden paths they walked -
The moon was at its height -
And lover-wise they strolled and talked,
But something was not right.
And ‘Who is that, now who is that, oh who is that,’ quoth she,
(All silent in her heart she spake) ‘that seems to follow me?’
He drew her closer to his side;
She felt his lingering kiss;
And yet a shadow seemed to glide
Between her heart and his.
And ‘What is that, now what is that, oh what is that,’ she said,
(All silent to herself she spake) ‘that minds me of the dead?’
They wandered back by beds of bloom;
They climbed a winding stair;
They crossed the threshold of their room,
But something waited there.
‘Now who is this, and what is this, and where is this,’ she cried,
(All silent was the cry she made) ‘that comes to haunt and hide?’
Wide-eyed she lay, the while he slept;
She could not name her fear.
But something from her bedside crept
Just as the dawn drew near,
(She did not know, she could not know - how could she know? - who came
To haunt the home of one whose hand had dug her grave of shame).