The Question

Il poeta mi disse, ‘Che pensi?’ : Dante

Virgil stayed Dante with a wayside word;
But long, and low, and loud, and urgently,
The poets of my passion have I heard
Summoning me.

It is their closest whisper and their call.
Their greatness to this lowliness hath spoken,
Their voices rest upon that interval,
Their sign, their token.

Man at his little prayer tells heaven his thought,
To man entrusts his thought – ‘Friend, this is mine.’
The immortal poets within my breast have sought,
Saying, ‘What is thine?’

Alice Meynell, 1847-1922

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