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About this Poem 

“On the Threshold” was originally published in A London Plane-Tree and Other Verse (T. Fisher Unwin, 1889).

On the Threshold

O God, my dream! I dreamed that you were dead;
Your mother hung above the couch and wept
Whereon you lay all white, and garlanded
With blooms of waxen whiteness. I had crept
Up to your chamber-door, which stood ajar,
And in the doorway watched you from afar,
Nor dared advance to kiss your lips and brow.
I had no part nor lot in you, as now;
Death had not broken between us the old bar;
Nor torn from out my heart the old, cold sense
Of your misprision and my impotence.

This poem is in the public domain. Published in Poem-a-Day on August 5, 2018, by the Academy of American Poets.

This poem is in the public domain. Published in Poem-a-Day on August 5, 2018, by the Academy of American Poets.

Amy Levy

Amy Levy

Amy Levy was born in London on November 10, 1861, the second of seven children in a middle-class Jewish family. Levy attended Brighton High School for Girls, a school founded by women’s rights advocates that would be a catalyst for Levy’s outspoken, feminist views. While there, she wrote “Xantippe,” a dramatic monologue from the perspective of Socrates’s wife.

by this poet

poem

With fruit and flowers the board is decked,

    The wine and laughter flow;

I'll not complain—could one expect

    So dull a world to know?



You look across the fruit and flowers,

    My glance your glances find.—
It is our secret, only ours,

    Since all the world is