Verse > Anthologies > George Willis Cooke, ed. > The Poets of Transcendentalism: An Anthology
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George Willis Cooke, comp.  The Poets of Transcendentalism: An Anthology.  1903.
 
Comprehension
By Anna Callender Brackett (1836–1911)
 
FOOT surer than his, crossing o’er
The rapid river shore to shore
While down the stream the ice-floes roar,—
 
Hold closer than the bird’s that sings
Unmindful how the storm-wind swings        5
The slender twig to which he clings,—
 
Touch finer far than that so fine
Upon the spider’s silvery line
He crosses sure through sun and shine,—
 
O surer, closer, finer yet,        10
Must be the thought that strives to get
And hold the Truth inviolate.
 
For narrow as the bridge did rise
Before the prophet’s wondering eyes,
Runs still the path to Paradise.        15
 
On either side we seize despair;
We prison fast the sunlit air,
And lo!’ tis darkness that is there!
 
And so we miss, and grasp, and lose,
While Thought its shadow still pursues,        20
Nor knows its work is not to choose;
 
For only where the one is twain,
And where the two are one again,
Will Truth no more be sought in vain.
 
 
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