To a Fellow-Poet
As after midnight’s muteness the first birds
call to one another and seem to make
the space between them, even so the words
within a poem call each other, wake
each other to a life before unknown.
And should there be an end to this, a stop,
at the poem’s edge a boundary- or gravestone?
Should we put love in quarantine, and lop,
before they touch, association’s trees?
I hope not so; but in a pleasant shade
woven of all our words to walk at ease,
delighting each in what the other said,
would be the highest art and truest praise
of G-d whose life quickens each leaf, each phrase.