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Robert Graves Is Famous For His War Writing, But He Also Wrote Love Poetry

The Impossible 

Dear love, since the impossible proves
Our sole recourse from this distress,
Claim it: the ebony ritual-mask of no
Cannot outstare a living yes.
Claim it without despond or hate
Or greed; but in your gentler tone
Say: “This is ours, the impossible,” and silence
Will give consent it is ours alone.
The impossible has wild-cat claws
Which you would rather meet and die
Than commit love to time’s curative venom
And break our oath; for so would I.

A Shift of Scene

To lie far off, in bed with a foul cough.
And a view of elms and roofs and six panes’ worth
Of clear sky; here to watch, all the day long.
For a dove, or a black cat, or a puff of smoke
To cause a shift of scene—how could it do so?—
Or to take a pen and write—what else is there
To write but: “I am not dead, not quite, as yet
Though I lie far off, in bed with a foul cough
And a view of elms and roofs and six panes’ worth
Of clear sky”? Tell me, love, are you sick too
And plagued like me with a great hole in the mind
Where all those towers we built, and not on sand,
Have been sucked in and lost; so that it seems
No dove, and no black cat, nor puff of smoke
Can cause a shift of scene and fetch us back
To where we lie as one, in the same bed?