to a young child
Margaret, are you grieving
Over goldengrove unleaving?
Leaves, like the things of man, you
With your fresh thoughts care for, can you?
Ah! As the heart grows older,
It will grow to such sights colder
By and by, nor spare a sigh
Though worlds of wanwood leafmeal lie;
And yet you will weep and know why.
Now no matter, child, the name:
Sorrow's springs are the same.
Nor mouth had, no nor mind, expressed
What heart heard of, ghost guessed:
It is the blight man was born for,
It is Margaret you mourn for.
~ Gerard Manley Hopkins
(I adore this poem and had forgotten about it until a friend reminded me of it yesterday. I wanted to give it to my students for years, and required them to memorize it, hoping it would sink into a mind or two, and its beauty and truth survive there and thrive. Julia and I studied this poem together a bit. She'll recite it next Wednesday. I found, gladly, that I still had it memorized. Do you have poetry memorized still?)