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.
 
Confessio Amantis
By William Ellery Channing (1818–1901)
 
I STILL can suffer pain;
I strive and hope in vain;
My wounds may not all heal,
Nor time their depth reveal.
 
So dreamed I, of a summer day,        5
As in the oak’s cool shade I lay,
And thought that shining, lightsome river
Went rippling, rippling on forever:—
 
That I should bend with pain,
Should sing and love in vain;        10
That I should fret and pine,
And hopeless thought define.
 
I want a true and simple heart,
That asks no pleasure in a part,
But seeks the whole; and finds the soul,        15
A heart at rest, in sure control.
 
I shall accept all I may have,
Or fine or foul, or rich or brave;
Accept that measure in life’s cup,
And touch the rim and raise it up.        20
 
Some drop of Time’s strange glass it holds,
So much endurance it enfolds;
Or base and small, or broadly meant,
I cannot spill God’s element.
 
Dion or Cæsar drained no more,        25
Not Solon, nor a Plato’s lore;
So much had they the power to do,
So much hadst thou, and equals too.
 
 
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