Treasure Island

Joyce Kilmer

(1886-1918 / New Jersey)

Wealth


(For Aline)

From what old ballad, or from what rich frame
Did you descend to glorify the earth?
Was it from Chaucer's singing book you came?
Or did Watteau's small brushes give you birth?

Nothing so exquisite as that slight hand
Could Raphael or Leonardo trace.
Nor could the poets know in Fairyland
The changing wonder of your lyric face.

I would possess a host of lovely things,
But I am poor and such joys may not be.
So God who lifts the poor and humbles kings
Sent loveliness itself to dwell with me.

Submitted: Tuesday, December 31, 2002

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Read poems about / on: ballad, lyric, birth, god, joy, change

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  • Walterrean Salley (8/9/2012 7:51:00 PM)

    would possess a host of lovely things,
    But I am poor and such joys may not be.
    So God who lifts the poor and humbles kings
    Sent loveliness itself to dwell with me.

    Wealth isn't everything. If riches would have befallen Kilmer, he would have graciously embraced. But the poet understood that, possibly, such fortune for him would never be.

    Nonetheless, Kilmer seemed to have understood life and its true riches, which are fairness, humility, and contentedness. Good for him. A lovely piece here, with a grand-life lesson. (Report) Reply

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