A Celebration of Women Writers

"Hope." by Emily Jane Brontë (1818-1848)

First Publication: Poems by Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell London: Aylott and Jones, 8, Paternoster Row, 1846. pp. 82-83.

Editor: Mary Mark Ockerbloom


HOPE was but a timid friend;
  She sat without the grated den,
Watching how my fate would tend,
  Even as selfish-hearted men.

[Page 83]

She was cruel in her fear;
  Through the bars, one dreary day,
I looked out to see her there,
  And she turned her face away !

Like a false guard, false watch keeping,
  Still, in strife, she whispered peace;
She would sing while I was weeping;
  If I listened, she would cease.

False she was, and unrelenting;
  When my last joys strewed the ground,
Even Sorrow saw, repenting,
  Those sad relics scattered round;

Hope, whose whisper would have given
  Balm to all my frenzied pain,
Stretched her wings, and soared to heaven,
  Went, and ne'er returned again !



Editor: Mary Mark Ockerbloom