The Unconquered Air, and Other Poems (1912)/Against the Gate of Life
AGAINST THE GATE OF LIFE
TO HELEN KELLER
As mute against the gate of life you sit,
Longing to open it,
Full oft you must behold, in thought, a maid
With banner white, whose lilies do not fade,
And armor glory lit.
Across the years, darkling, you still must see,
In the hush of memory,
Her whom no wrong of Fate could make afraid—
Of all the maidens of the world, The Maid!—
In her brave purity.
For she, like you, was singly set apart,
O high and lonely heart!—
And hearkened Voices, silent save to her,
And looked on visions she might not transfer
By any loving art,—
Knew the dread chill of isolation, when
Life darkened to her ken;
Yet could not know, as round her closed the night,
How radiant and far would shine her light,—
A miracle to men!