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          Amy Lowell (1874-1925)

                    To a Friend

    I ask but one thing of you, only one,
        That always you will be my dream of you;
        That never shall I wake to find untrue
    All this I have believed and rested on,
    Forever vanished, like a vision gone
        Out into the night. Alas, how few
        There are who strike in us a chord we knew
    Existed, but so seldom heard its tone
        We tremble at the half-forgotten sound.
    The world is full of rude awakenings
        And heaven-born castles shattered to the ground,
    Yet still our human longing vainly clings
        To a belief in beauty through all wrongs.
        O stay your hand, and leave my heart its songs!


To a Friend appeared in Lowell's first book A Dome of Many-Coloured Glass in 1912. She was posthumously awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1926.

The above poem can be found, for example, in:

  • Lowell, Amy. The Complete Poetical Works of Amy Lowell. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1955.