Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, INNOCENCE (1), by CONRAD AIKEN

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

INNOCENCE (1), by                 Poet Analysis     Poet's Biography
First Line: Let me be always one with earth
Last Line: Earth, bid your lovers rise from me!
Subject(s): Innocence

LET me be always one with earth
Who bade her music through me run,
Who through my veins poured singing mirth,
Made me a dancer in her sun!
Out of her living dust she made, --
The dust that once was leaves and trees;
Grey dust of roses long decayed,
Still warm with life of birds and bees;
The dust of grass, the dust of clover,
High forests that have long been dead,
And dust of many a laughing lover,
Whose songs are running in my head. . .
All that earth has been, all she is,
Her musics and her ecstasies,
Cold winter rains, warm rains of spring,
And the slow sun that makes her sing, --
I know them all, all earth's in me,
I am earth's child, and I am earth;
At one with her in grief and glee,
I dream, with her, through death and birth.
While I am living, give me speech
Unconscious as the song of birds,
So I may sing earth's praise, and teach
Her beauty, though in broken words;
When I am dead, let leaf and bough,
And small grass, and anemone,
Have this sweet life that I have now:
Earth, bid your lovers rise from me!

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