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In A Dark Time

 In a dark time, the eye begins to see,
I meet my shadow in the deepening shade;
I hear my echo in the echoing wood--
A lord of nature weeping to a tree,
I live between the heron and the wren,
Beasts of the hill and serpents of the den.
What's madness but nobility of soul At odds with circumstance? The day's on fire! I know the purity of pure despair, My shadow pinned against a sweating wall, That place among the rocks--is it a cave, Or winding path? The edge is what I have.
A steady storm of correspondences! A night flowing with birds, a ragged moon, And in broad day the midnight come again! A man goes far to find out what he is-- Death of the self in a long, tearless night, All natural shapes blazing unnatural light.
Dark,dark my light, and darker my desire.
My soul, like some heat-maddened summer fly, Keeps buzzing at the sill.
Which I is I? A fallen man, I climb out of my fear.
The mind enters itself, and God the mind, And one is One, free in the tearing wind.

Poem by Theodore Roethke
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Book: Shattered Sighs