In Vain. By Emily Elizabeth Dickinson

 I CANNOT live with you,
    It would be life,
    And life is over there
    Behind the shelf

    The sexton keeps the key to,
    Putting up
    Our life, his porcelain,
    Like a cup

    Discarded of the housewife,
    Quaint or broken;
    A newer Sevres pleases,
    Old ones crack.

    I could not die with you,
    For one must wait
    To shut the other’s gaze down, —
    You could not.

    And I, could I stand by
    And see you freeze,
    Without my right of frost,
    Death’s privilege?

    Nor could I rise with you,
    Because your face
    Would put out Jesus’,
    That new grace

    Glow plain and foreign
    On my homesick eye,
    Except that you, than he
    Shone closer by.

    They’d judge us — how?
    For you served Heaven, you know,
    Or sought to;
    I could not,

    Because you saturated sight,
    And I had no more eyes
    For sordid excellence
    As Paradise.

    And were you lost, I would be,
    Though my name
    Rang loudest
    On the heavenly fame.

    And were you saved,
    And I condemned to be
    Where you were not,
    That self were hell to me.

    So we must keep apart,
    You there, I here,
    With just the door ajar
    That oceans are,
    And prayer,
    And that pale sustenance,