On the outskirts of a great city,
A street of fashionable mansions well withdrawn from all the noise
and bustle;
And in the street--the only figure there--in the middle of the road,
in the bitter wind --
Red-nosed thin-shawled, with ankles bare and old boots--
A woman bent and haggard, croaking a dismal song.

And the great windows stare upon her wretchedness, and stare across
the road upon each other,
With big fool eyes;
But not a door is opened, not a face is seen,
Nor form of life down all the dreary street,
To certify the existence of humanity,--
Other than hers.