From the Book of Valentines

by Bliss Carman


 

WHO IS THE OWNER?


 

Who owns this house, my lord or I?
He in whose name the title runs, 
Or I, who keep it swept and clean 
And open to the winds and suns?

He who is absent year by year, 

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On some far pleasure of his own, 
Or I who spend on it so much 
Of willing flesh and aching bone?

What if it prove a fable, all
This rumour of a legal lord,

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And we should find ourselves in truth
Owners and masters of the board! 

What if this earth should just belong
To those who tend it, you and me!
What if for once we should refuse 

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His rental to this absentee?

O friends, no landlord in the world
Could love the place as well as I!
Love is the owner of the house, 
The only lord of destiny.

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