FOOLISH is he who says that at his door
I knock but once, a furtive moment stay,
Fearing lest he shall hear, then haste away,
Glad to escape him — to return no more.
Not so, I knock and wait, and o’er and o’er
Come back to summon him. Day after day
I come to call the idler from his play,
Or wake the dreamer with my vain uproar.
Out of a thousand, haply, now and then,
One, if he hear again and yet again,
Will tardy rise and open languidly.
The rest, half puzzled, half annoyed, return
To play or sleep, nor seek nor wish to learn
Who the untimely, clownish guest may be.