Published on Academy of American Poets (https://poets.org)


The Answer

When I go back to earth
And all my joyous body
Puts off the red and white
That once had been so proud,

If men should pass above
With false and feeble pity,
My dust will find a voice
To answer them aloud:
“Be still, I am content,

Take back your poor compassion,
Joy was a flame in me
Too steady to destroy;
Lithe as a bending reed
Loving the storm that sways her—

I found more joy in sorrow
Than you could find in joy.”

Credit


This poem is in the public domain. This poem appeared in Poem-a-Day on July 20, 2014.

Author


Sara Teasdale

Born in 1884, Sara Trevor Teasdale's work was characterized by its simplicity and clarity and her use of classical forms.

Date Published: 1915-10-20

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/answer