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The Jolly Company
by Rupert Brooke (1887-1915)

The stars, a jolly company,
   I envied, straying late and lonely;
And cried upon their revelry:
   "O white companionship! You only
In love, in faith unbroken dwell,
Friends radiant and inseparable!"

Light-heart and glad they seemed to me
   And merry comrades (even so

God out of Heaven may laugh to see
   The happy crowds: and never know
That in his lone obscure distress
Each walketh in a wilderness).

But I, remembering, pitied well
   And loved them, who, with lonely light,
In empty infinite spaces dwell,
   Disconsolate. For, all the night,
I heard the thin gnat-voices cry,
Star to faint star, across the sky.


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