Robert Browning (1812-1889 / London / England)
Man I Am and Man Would Be, Love
Man I am and man would be, Love--merest man and nothing more.
Bid me seem no other! Eagles boast of pinions--let them soar!
I may put forth angel's plumage, once unmanned, but not before.
Now on earth to stand suffices,--nay, if kneeling serves, to kneel:
Here you front me, here I find the all of heaven that earth can feel:
Sense looks straight,--not over,under,--perfect sees beyond appeal.
Good you are and wise, full circle: what to me were more outside?
Wiser wisdom, better goodness? Ah, such want the angel's wide
Sense to take and hold and keep them! Mine at least has never tried.
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