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Beauty

Beauty means this to one and that to the other.
 
And yet when anyone of us has seen that
 
which to him is beautiful he has known an emotion
 
which is in every case the same in kind.
 
A ship in sail
 
a blooming flower,
 
a town at night,
 
a lovely poem,
 
leaf shadows,
 
a child’s grace,
 
the starry1 skies,
 
apple trees in spring,
 
the thought of beauty,
 
these are the drops of rain
 
that keep the human spirit from death by draught2.
 
They are a stealing and a silent refreshment3
 
that we perhaps do not think about
 
but which goes on all the time.
 
Beauty is the smile on the earth’s face,
 
open to all,
 
and needs but the eyes to see,
 
mood to understand.

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