Pacifist

This day - sea, sunlight, laughter by my side,
gull beating on the air, gull folding wings
to plummet to the water and to rise
with a slim silver prize -

this day - alive with love and yet alive
in the same air, with hate, with fear, with tears,
and I untouched, ungiven, with no choice
but to withhold my voice.

Trammeled we are, who would deny all force,
sheltered, who would withstand all buffeting,
granted, as listeners to our deepest pleas,
the mute and patient trees.

Where is the test, the proof, of our intent!
I, in the peace of seawind with the cry
of a far suntouched gull, caught in this day,
see no immediate way.

Only a life that's hammered to the end
by one sure purpose, shall at length suffice
to show the Lord the strength of my desire
to guard His eternal fire.

Bay Head
1945