Life offers few displays that seem more wrong
To watchful hearts, than sudden separation
Of beings from their elements, that strong
and true would grow from long continuation.

The sleight magician, from his silent, magic crowds;
The bravest general, from his lone glory, strife;
The smoky condor, from his world of crags and clouds;
This man, from this loved woman’s life.

But what is this that whispers to affirm
That sadness must not always needs be poor?
The growing of a sharp-edged joy confirms
The loser gains by learning to endure
A stirring boon that comes with the steep cost:
The benefit of loving what is lost.

Kuthai, Austria, 1976