Old and New Art


‘I am not as these are,’ the poet saith
 In youth's pride, and the painter, among men
 At bay, where never pencil comes nor pen,
And shut about with his own frozen breath.
To others, for whom only rhyme wins faith
 As poets,—only paint as painters,—then
 He turns in the cold silence; and again
Shrinking, ‘I am not as these are,’ he saith.

And say that this is so, what follows it?
 For were thine eyes set backwards in thine head,
  Such words were well; but they see on, and far.
Unto the lights of the great Past, new-lit
 Fair for the Future's track, look thou instead,—
  Say thou instead, ‘I am not as these are.’
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