Barter

By Sara Teasdale 1884–1933 Sara Teasdale
Life has loveliness to sell,
      All beautiful and splendid things,
Blue waves whitened on a cliff,
      Soaring fire that sways and sings,
And children's faces looking up
Holding wonder like a cup.

Life has loveliness to sell,
      Music like a curve of gold,
Scent of pine trees in the rain,
      Eyes that love you, arms that hold,
And for your spirit's still delight,
Holy thoughts that star the night.

Spend all you have for loveliness,
      Buy it and never count the cost;
For one white singing hour of peace
      Count many a year of strife well lost,
And for a breath of ecstasy
Give all you have been, or could be.

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Poet Sara Teasdale 1884–1933

SCHOOL / PERIOD Modern

Subjects Social Commentaries, Money & Economics

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

 Sara  Teasdale

Biography

Sara Teasdale received public admiration for her well-crafted lyrical poetry which centered on a woman's changing perspectives on beauty, love, and death. Many of Teasdale's poems chart developments in her own life, from her experiences as a sheltered young woman in St. Louis, to those as a successful yet increasingly uneasy writer in New York City, to a depressed and disillusioned person who would commit suicide in 1933. . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Social Commentaries, Money & Economics

SCHOOL / PERIOD Modern

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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