Home  »  A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895  »  I Saw a New World

Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908). A Victorian Anthology, 1837–1895. 1895.

William Brighty Rands 1823–80

I Saw a New World

I SAW a new world in my dream,

Where all the folks alike did seem:

There was no Child, there was no Mother,

There was no Change, there was no Other.

For everything was Same, the Same;

There was no praise, there was no blame;

There was neither Need nor Help for it;

There was nothing fitting or unfit.

Nobody laugh’d, nobody wept;

None grew weary, so none slept;

There was nobody born, and nobody wed;

This world was a world of the living-dead.

I long’d to hear the Time-Clock strike

In the world where people were all alike;

I hated Same, I hated Forever;

I long’d to say Neither, or even Never.

I long’d to mend, I long’d to make;

I long’d to give, I long’d to take;

I long’d for a change, whatever came after,

I long’d for crying, I long’d for laughter.

At last I heard the Time-Clock boom,

And woke from my dream in my little room;

With a smile on her lips my Mother was nigh,

And I heard the Baby crow and cry.

And I thought to myself, How nice it is

For me to live in a world like this,

Where things can happen, and clocks can strike,

And none of the people are made alike;

Where Love wants this, and Pain wants that,

Where all our hearts want Tit for Tat

In the jumbles we make with our heads and our hands,

In a world that nobody understands,

But with work, and hope, and the right to call

Upon Him who sees it and knows us all!