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by [?]

Unto my Gladness then I cried:
‘I will not be denied!
Answer me now; and tell me why
Thou dost not fall, as a broken star
Out of the Dark where such things are,
And where such bright things die.
How canst thou, with thy fountain dance
Shatter clear sight with radiance?–
How canst thou reach and soar, and fling,
Over my heart’s dark shuddering,
Unearthly lights on everything?
What dost thou see? What dost thou know?’
My Gladness said to me, bowed below,
‘Gladness I am: created so.’

‘And dare’st thou, in my mortal veins
Sing, with the Spring’s descending rains?
While in this hour, and momently,
Forth of myself I look, and see
Torn treasure of my heart’s Desire;
And human glories in the mire,
That should make glad some paradise!–
The childhood strewn in foulest place,
The girlhood, plundered of its grace;
The eyelids shut upon spent eyes
That never looked upon thy face!
Answer me, thou, if answer be!’

My Gladness said to me:
‘Weep if thou wilt; yea, weep, and doubt.
I may not let the Sun go out.’

Then to my Gladness still I cried:
‘And how canst thou abide?–‘
Here, where my listening heart must hark
These sorrows rising from the Dark
Where still they starve, and strive and die,
Who bear each heaviest penalty
Of humanhood;–nor grasp, nor guess,
The garment’s hem of happiness!–
The spear-wound throbbing in my song,
It throbs more bitterly than wrong,–
It burns more wildly than despair,–
The will to share,
The will to share!
Little I knew,–the blind-fold I,–
Joy would become like agony,–
Like arrows of the Sun in me!

* * * * *

I hold thee here. I have thee, now,–
And I am human. But what art thou!’

My Gladness answered me:
‘Wayfarer, wilt thou understand?–
Follow me on. And keep my hand.’