Wisdom by Sara Teasdale


by Sara Teasdale

It was a night of early spring,
The winter-sleep was scarcely broken;
Around us shadows and the wind
Listened for what was never spoken.
Though half a score of years are gone,
Spring comes as sharply now as then—
But if we had it all to do
It would be done the same again.
It was a spring that never came;
But we have lived enough to know
That what we never have, remains;
It is the things we have that go.


Sara Teasdale (1884-1933) was an American lyrical poet associated with the early 20th century’s “poetry renaissance” in America. Teasdale was born in St. Louis, Missouri and began writing poetry as a child. She published her first poetry collection, Sonnets to Duse and Other Poems, in 1907. Teasdale went on to publish several more collections including Helen of Troy and Other Poems (1911), Rivers to the Sea (1915), and Flame and Shadow (1920). The poem “There Will Come Soft Rains” from her 1920 collection is one of her most famous works. Teasdale’s poetry was known for its lyrical style, romantic themes, and focus on nature and love. She won the first Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1918 for her 1917 collection Love Songs. Plagued by poor health for much of her life, Teasdale committed suicide in 1933 at age 48. Her lyrical and romantic poems left a legacy and influenced later poets.