Verse > Anthologies > Louis Untermeyer, ed. > Modern American Poetry
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Louis Untermeyer, ed. (1885–1977). Modern American Poetry.  1919.
 
Ezra Pound. 1884–
 
104. Ballad for Gloom
 
FOR God, our God is a gallant foe 
That playeth behind the veil. 
  
I have loved my God as a child at heart 
That seeketh deep bosoms for rest, 
I have loved my God as a maid to man—         5
But lo, this thing is best: 
  
To love your God as a gallant foe that plays behind the veil; 
To meet your God as the night winds meet beyond Arcturus' pale. 
  
I have played with God for a woman, 
I have staked with my God for truth,  10
I have lost to my God as a man, clear-eyed— 
    His dice be not of ruth. 
  
For I am made as a naked blade, 
    But hear ye this thing in sooth: 
  
Who loseth to God as man to man  15
    Shall win at the turn of the game. 
I have drawn my blade where the lightnings meet 
    But the ending is the same: 
Who loseth to God as the sword blades lose 
    Shall win at the end of the game.  20
  
For God, our God is a gallant foe that playeth behind the veil. 
Whom God deigns not to overthrow hath need of triple mail. 
 
 
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