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FOLLOWING FOOTSTEPS

DEWY droops the green sweet-brier,
  Dewy hangs the rose,
As I follow where her footstep,
  Lightly printed, goes.
	
Sun, that cometh up to meet me, Was there aught to see Down beneath that gray horizon Half so fair as she?
Down this path she careless wandered Where the lilies drooped; Here her garment brushed the dew off As she, gathering, stooped.
Here she turned and paused, uncertain— Ah, I hear it now!— Over stones the full brook singing Faintly, far below!
Leading on to greet the roses Run the footsteps free; Red, and white, and pink she gathered,— Dropping one for me!
Then to where the honeysuckle Climbs to scent the air— No, she stopped and left it climbing, Turning otherwhere.
Where then? Oh, adown this pathway, Where her heliotrope Makes the air with perfume heavy, Purpling all the slope.
Sun, that maketh shadows shorter As I follow still, Where were you at early dawning When she climbed the hill?
Shall she climb to wait your coming, She, my own, my sweet, When her gracious presence only Makes your day complete?
Here she left her blossoms lying In a hawthorn’s care, And the dewy steps go springing Up the rocks so bare.
Higher, higher ever leading, Follow I and Hope— Sunny hair lit up with sunshine— Ah! my heliotrope!
Anna Callender Brackett [1836-1911]