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Edwin Arlington Robinson - Two Sonnets

I

Just as I wonder at the twofold screen 
Of twisted innocence that you would plait 
For eyes that uncourageously await 
The coming of a kingdom that has been, 
So do I wonder what Godís love can mean
To you that all so strangely estimate 
The purpose and the consequent estate 
Of one short shuddering step to the Unseen. 

No, I have not your backward faith to shrink 
Lone-faring from the doorway of Godís home
To find Him in the names of buried men; 
Nor your ingenious recreance to think 
We cherish, in the life that is to come, 
The scattered features of dead friends again. 


IL

Never until our souls are strong enough
To plunge into the crater of the Schemeó 
Triumphant in the flash there to redeem 
Loveís handsel and forevermore to slough, 
Like cerements at a played-out masque, the rough 
And reptile skins of us whereon we set 
The stigma of scared yearsóare we to get 
Where atoms and the ages are one stuff. 

Nor ever shall we know the cursed waste 
Of life in the beneficence divine 
Of starlight and of sunlight and soul-shine
That we have squandered in sinís frail distress, 
Till we have drunk, and trembled at the taste, 
The mead of Thoughtís prophetic endlessness. 

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Poet: Edwin Arlington Robinson
Poem: Two Sonnets
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