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Short poem

William Wilfred Campbell (1858?-1918)

The Higher Kinship

              1Life is too grim with anxious, eating care
              2     To cherish what is best. Our souls are scarred
              3     By daily agonies, and our conscience marred
              4By petty tyrannies that waste and wear.
              5Why is this human fate so hard to bear?
              6     Could we but live with hill-lakes silver-starred,
              7     Or where the eternal silence leaneth toward
              8The awful front of nature, waste and bare:

              9Then might we, brothers to the lofty thought
            10     And inward self-communion of her dream,
            11Into that closer kin with love be brought,
            12Where mighty hills and woods and waters, wan,
            13Moon-paved at midnight or godlike at dawn,
            14     Hold all earth's aspirations in their gleam.

Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: The Collected Poems of Wilfred Campbell (New York: Fleming H. Revell, 1905), p. 274. PS 8455 A6A17. Robarts Library.
First publication date: 1905
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
RP edition: RPO 1998.
Recent editing: 4:2002/1/17

Composition date: April 1901
Form: Italian Sonnet (Variant)
Rhyme: abbaabba cdceed

Other poems by William Wilfred Campbell