Verse > Anthologies > Harriet Monroe, ed. > Poetry: A Magazine of Verse, 1912–22
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Harriet Monroe, ed. (1860–1936).  Poetry: A Magazine of Verse.  1912–22.
 
The Birdcage
By Arthur Davison Ficke
 
  O TRAGIC bird! whose bleeding feet,
Whose maddened wings dizzily beat
Against your cage in agony—
Soon, soon to win your liberty!
Still you believe that happiness        5
Dwells just beyond the bars you press
That if a sudden miracle
Gave your desire, life would be well.
The old, old dream! The old, old lure!
The devil plays; his stakes are sure.        10
With happiness he baits his gin
That still mankind shall perish in.
And still we trust our hearts could be
Blessed by the distant liberty,
Blind to the newer agony!        15
The earth will be a frozen coal
Before man knows his traitor soul.
 
 
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