When the New Year Came

by Dora Read Goodale (1866 - 1915)

from All Round the Year, Verses from Sky Farm


I wondered long on New Year’s Eve a
week and more ago,
I wondered why the New Year came across the
crusted snow,–
The snow that flashed through the crystal light in a
splendor cold and clear,
Till the star-dust dazzled the lifted eyes of the little
unknown Year.
So warm, I thought, on southern slopes the wooing
April day,
So sweet the touch of flower-lips in the rosy hours
of May,
With leaf and blossom and bud of hope might the
glad New Year begin,
Were the foot of Spring on the threshold what time
he entered in!
All night I watched by the dying fire, and fanned
its breath of flame,
And I lifted the creaking casement when the stroke
of midnight came;
The chill air took away my breath, all under the
virgin heaven,
And swift and keen as the light of the stars, God’s
answering word was given.
The wonderful shining struck me dumb, but my
eyes recall it now,
And I dare not breath one April sigh, thro’ my
soul’s unspoken vow;
For I see, tho’ the flush and fulness of life in the
springtime of youth are dear,
There’s an angel stands with a shining sword at the
gate of the new-born Year