I remember the first line of a poem I read over two decades ago going like this: "Coming to the city on a wintry evening..." I have forgotten the rest of the lines except for the last phrase "the all too human heart." The theme, I think, is about the balancing of the intellectual and the emotional in art.
Please help me find the poem.
AT A BACH CONCERT
Coming by evening through the wintry city
We said that art is out of love with life.
Here we approach a love that is not pity.
This antique discipline, tenderly severe,
Renews belief in love yet masters feeling,
Asking of us a grace in what we bear.
Form is the ultimate gift that love can offer -
The vital union of necessity
With all that we desire, all that we suffer.
A too-compassionate art is half an art.
Only such proud restraining purity
Restores the else-betrayed, too-human heart.
Thanks, Ilza, that's the poem! Our professor of comparative literature shared this poem with us in her class. I lost my copy over the years.
It really feels great to get it back, thanks to you.
Wow, you are a set of geniuses in this forum!