They have watered the street, It shines in the glare of lamps, Cold, white lamps, And lies Like a slow-moving river, Barred with silver and black. Cabs go down it, One, And then another, Between them I hear the shuffling of feet. Tramps doze on the window-ledges, Night-walkers pass along the sidewalks. The city is squalid and sinister, With the silver-barred street in the midst, Slow-moving, A river leading nowhere. Opposite my window, The moon cuts, Clear and round, Through the plum-coloured night. She cannot light the city: It is too bright. It has white lamps, And glitters coldly. I stand in the window and watch the moon. She is thin and lustreless, But I love her. I know the moon, And this is an alien city.
Amy Lowell - 1874-1925
A face seen passing in a crowded street, A voice heard singing music, large and free; And from that moment life is changed, and we Become of more heroic temper, meet To freely ask and give, a man complete Radiant because of faith, we dare to be What Nature meant us. Brave idolatry Which can conceive a hero! No deceit, No knowledge taught by unrelenting years, Can quench this fierce, untamable desire. We know that what we long for once achieved Will cease to satisfy. Be still our fears; If what we worship fail us, still the fire Burns on, and it is much to have believed.