Verse > Anthologies > Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. > An American Anthology, 1787–1900
Edmund Clarence Stedman, ed. (1833–1908).  An American Anthology, 1787–1900.  1900.
972. My Comrade
By James Jeffrey Roche
THE LOVE of man and woman is as fire,
To warm, to light, but surely to consume
And self-consuming die. There is no room
For constancy and passionate desire.
We stand at last beside a wasted pyre,        5
Touch its dead embers, groping in the gloom;
And where an altar stood, erect a tomb,
And sing a requiem to a broken lyre.
But comrade-love is as a welding blast
Of candid flame and ardent temperature:        10
Glowing most fervent, it doth bind more fast;
And melting both, but makes the union sure.
The dross alone is burnt—till at the last
The steel, if cold, is one, and strong and pure.


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