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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.
The Library of the World’s Best Literature. An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

In Three Days

By Robert Browning (1812–1889)

SO, I shall see her in three days

And just one night,—but nights are short,—

Then two long hours, and that is morn.

See how I come, unchanged, unworn—

Feel, where my life broke off from thine,

How fresh the splinters keep and fine,—

Only a touch and we combine!

Too long, this time of year, the days!

But nights—at least the nights are short.

As night shows where her one moon is,

A hand’s-breadth of pure light and bliss,

So, life’s night gives my lady birth

And my eyes hold her! What is worth

The rest of heaven, the rest of earth?

O loaded curls, release your store

Of warmth and scent, as once before

The tingling hair did, lights and darks

Outbreaking into fairy sparks

When under curl and curl I pried

After the warmth and scent inside,

Through lights and darks how manifold—

The dark inspired, the light controlled!

As early Art embrowned the gold.

What great fear—should one say, “Three days

That change the world might change as well

Your fortune; and if joy delays,

Be happy that no worse befell.”

What small fear—if another says,

“Three days and one short night beside

May throw no shadow on your ways;

But years must teem with change untried,

With chance not easily defied,

With an end somewhere undescried.”

No fear!—or if a fear be born

This minute, it dies out in scorn.

Fear? I shall see her in three days

And one night,—now the nights are short,—

Then just two hours, and that is morn.