Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, OPPORTUNITY, by JANE BARLOW

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OPPORTUNITY, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: If this befell: at some fair dawning-time
Last Line: Enclose your spirit like a dungeon-grate?
Subject(s): Procrastination

IF this befell: At some fair dawning-time,
Ere failed the wistful world its dreams and dew,
Sheer from the height of heaven reached down to you
A cloud-piled stair more pure than glistening rime,
And firm as marble wrought, in flights sublime
That pierced the void, whence lights come faint and few,
Beyond all starry outposts: toward what new
Wild-wondered shores—ah, would you dare to climb?

And if, while yet you doubted, lo, too late,
You saw it reft past range of fear and hope,
Caught up the vast, and here you needs must wait
Mere day's returning; would not narrow scope
Wide earth yield? Yea, the azure's amplest cope
Enclose your spirit like a dungeon-grate?

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