Verse > George William Russell > Collected Poems by A.E.
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George William (“A. E.”) Russell (1867–1935).  Collected Poems by A.E.  1913.
 
59. The Man to the Angel
 
 
I HAVE wept a million tears:
Pure and proud one, where are thine,
What the gain though all thy years
In unbroken beauty shine?
 
All your beauty cannot win        5
Truth we learn in pain and sighs:
You can never enter in
To the circle of the wise.
 
They are but the slaves of light
Who have never known the gloom,        10
And between the dark and bright
Willed in freedom their own doom.
 
Think not in your pureness there,
That our pain but follows sin:
There are fires for those who dare        15
Seek the throne of might to win.
 
Pure one, from your pride refrain:
Dark and lost amid the strife
I am myriad years of pain
Nearer to the fount of life.        20
 
When defiance fierce is thrown
At the god to whom you bow,
Rest the lips of the Unknown
Tenderest upon my brow.
 

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