Thekla’s Answer

A poem by Matthew Arnold

Where I am, thou ask’st, and where I wended
When my fleeting shadow pass’d from thee?
Am I not concluded now, and ended?
Have not life and love been granted me?

Ask, where now those nightingales are singing,
Who, of late, on the soft nights of May,
Set thine ears with soul-fraught music ringing
Only, while their love liv’d, lasted they.

Find I him, from whom I had to sever?
Doubt it not, we met, and we are one.
There, where what is join’d, is join’d for ever,
There, where tears are never more to run.

There thou too shalt live with us together,
When thou too hast borne the love we bore:
There, from sin deliver’d, dwells my Father,
Track’d by Murder’s bloody sword no more.

There he feels, it was no dream deceiving
Lur’d him starwards to uplift his eye:
God doth match his gifts to man’s believing;
Believe, and thou shalt find the Holy nigh.

All thou augurest here of lovely seeming
There shall find fulfilment in its day:
Dare, O Friend, be wandering, dare be dreaming;
Lofty thought lies oft in childish play.

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