What Are Years

What is our innocence,
what is our guilt? All are
naked, none is safe. And whence
is courage: the unanswered question,
the resolute doubt, —
dumbly calling, deafly listening—that
in misfortune, even death,
encourage others
and in its defeat, stirs
the soul to be strong? He
sees deep and is glad, who
accedes to mortality
and in his imprisonment rises
upon himself as
the sea in a chasm, struggling to be
free and unable to be,
in its surrendering
finds its continuing.
So he who strongly feels,
behaves. The very bird,
grown taller as he sings, steels
his form straight up. Though he is captive,
his mighty singing
says, satisfaction is a lowly
thing, how pure a thing is joy.
This is mortality,
this is eternity.

by Marianne Moore

Comments (4)

I love this poem. This poem is so amazing. I could read this all day long, every day.
in ITALIAN: Tu sei per i miei pensieri come il cibo per la vita, o come per la terra le dolci piogge di primavera, e per amor tuo sostengo una lotta come l'avaro con le sue ricchezze: Ora orgoglioso possessore, e quindi affranto che i tempi ladri gli rubino il suo tesoro; ora contando solo di stare con te, e ora preferendo che anche altri partecipino delle mie conquiste; Qualche volta deliziato della tu vista, e poco dopo affamato di un tuo sguardo; non possedendo ne cercando altra gioia che quella che tu dai o che da te io spero. E cosi', giorno dopo giorno, languisco e sono sazio, di tutto disponendo, e tutto desiderando.
Awesome I like this poem, check mine out
Ah Will, of love it is you surely here do write A feast on beauty, through thy pleasured sight Thy gaze to feed a starve'd mind As food to life compared, yet still you pine.