Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, TO HELEN KELLER, by BABETTE DEUTSCH



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TO HELEN KELLER, by            
First Line: You live in a country stranger than the moon
Last Line: And from the grown soul's deep and arrowy voice.
Alternate Author Name(s): Yarmolinsky, Avrahm, Mrs.
Subject(s): Blindness; Dreams; Keller, Helen (1880-1968); Night; Soul; Visually Handicapped; Nightmares; Bedtime


You live in a country stranger than the moon
Where nothing casts a shadow. In that place
Night has no secrets, and the ripened noon
Sheds only empty warmth upon the face.
The loudest surf is muffled on that shore,
The west wind beats in silence on those boughs,
And all the tongues that speak to the heart's core
Lie like the Seven Sleepers and cannot rouse.
We have not known that country, save in dreams,
And they were terrible. How shall we then
Find ways to come to you across the streams
Of baffled sense? How, from the earthy den
Where the keen spirit crouches warily,
Shall we chase you forth? Upon your barren star
You live beyond our means, and do not see
Our coward ways, and changelessly you are
Deaf to our lustful cries. Lean, then, and find
Reason to pity us, who have by choice
Turned from the luminous windows of the mind
And from the grown soul's deep and arrowy voice.





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