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Birthday Sonnet

Between two birthdays was what follows writ:

Six and twenty years old have I today grown.
What yet of myself to this world have I shown?
Been not to its songs and its strains a stone?
A-loitering forever, perfections to groan?
Have not I failed to live, have not I lost
Illusions all- therewith the skill to mirth
Where but to think upon one’s tempest-tossed
Days and nights akin, be to rue my birth?
Yet when I feel of dreams e’ermore a dearth,
Yet feel the pain to take, not strike a blow,
Not commit, suffer crimes my nation girth
-Many have fled; yet more will flee, I know-
May I endure, I wish, may unrest be sweet,
May a smile I find with which Truth to greet.


Featured video: Avodah, by Ernest Bloch,
Performed by Yehudi Menuhin.