New Light

The seas are quiet when the winds give o’er; 

So calm are we when passions are no more. 

For then we know how vain it was to boast 
Of fleeting things, too certain to be lost. 
Clouds of affection from our younger eyes         
Conceal that emptiness which age descries. 

 The soul’s dark cottage, battered and decayed,

Lets in new light through chinks that time has made: 
Stronger by weakness, wiser men become, 
As they draw near to their eternal home.         
Leaving the old, both worlds at once they view, 
That stand upon the threshold of the new.

Edmund Waller, 
From “Verses upon His Divine Poesy”


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