The Hill Wife
It was too lonely for her there, And too wild, And since there were but two of them, And no child. And work was little in the house, She was free, And followed where he furrowed field, Or felled log. She rested on a log and tossed The fresh chips, With a song only to herself On her lips. And once she went to break a bough Of black alder. She strayed so far she scarcely heard When he called her – And didn’t answer – didn’t speak – Or return. She stood, and then she ran and hid In the fern. He never found her, though he looked Everywhere, And he asked at her mother’s house Was she there. Sudden and swift and light as that The ties gave, And he learned of finalities Besides the grave.