If I should quit thee, sacrifice, forswear,
To what, my art, shall I give thee in keeping?
To the long winds of heaven? Shall these come sweeping
My songs forgone against my face and hair?
Or shall the mountain streams my lost joys bear,
My past poetic pain in the rain be weeping?
No, I shall live a poet waking, sleeping,
And I shall die a poet unaware.
From me, my art, thou canst not pass away;
And I, a singer though I cease to sing,
Shall own thee without joy in thee or woe.
Through my indifferent words of every day,
Scattered and all unlinked the rhymes shall ring
And make my poem; and I shall not know.