Ralph Waldo Emerson |
Upward, into the pure realm,
Over sun or star,
Over the flickering Dæmon film,
Thou must mount for love,—
Into vision which all form
In one only form dissolves;
In a region where the wheel,
On which all beings ride,
Where the starred eternal worm
Girds the world with bound and term;
Where unlike things are like,
When good and ill,
And joy and moan,
Melt into one.
There Past, Present, Future, shoot
Triple blossoms from one root
Substances at base divided
In their summits are united,
There the holy Essence rolls,
One through separated souls,
And the sunny &Aelig;on sleeps
Folding nature in its deeps,
And every fair and every good
Known in part or known impure
To men below,
In their archetypes endure.
The race of gods,
Or those we erring own,
Are shadows flitting up and down
In the still abodes.
The circles of that sea are laws,
Which publish and which hide the Cause.
Pray for a beam
Out of that sphere
Thee to guide and to redeem.
O what a load
Of care and toil
By lying Use bestowed,
From his shoulders falls, who sees
The true astronomy,
The period of peace!
Counsel which the ages kept,
Shall the well-born soul accept.
As the overhanging trees
Fill the lake with images,
As garment draws the garment's hem
Men their fortunes bring with them;
By right or wrong,
Lands and goods go to the strong;
Property will brutely draw
Still to the proprietor,
Silver to silver creep and wind,
And kind to kind,
Nor less the eternal poles
Of tendency distribute souls.
There need no vows to bind
Whom not each other seek but find.
They give and take no pledge or oath,
Nature is the bond of both.
No prayer persuades, no flattery fawns,
Their noble meanings are their pawns.
Plain and cold is their address,
Power have they for tenderness,
And so thoroughly is known
Each others' purpose by his own,
They can parley without meeting,
Need is none of forms of greeting,
They can well communicate
In their innermost estate;
When each the other shall avoid,
Shall each by each be most enjoyed.
Not with scarfs or perfumed gloves
Do these celebrate their loves,
Not by jewels, feasts, and savors,
Not by ribbons or by favors,
But by the sun-spark on the sea,
And the cloud-shadow on the lea,
The soothing lapse of morn to mirk,
And the cheerful round of work.
Their cords of love so public are,
They intertwine the farthest star.
The throbbing sea, the quaking earth,
Yield sympathy and signs of mirth;
Is none so high, so mean is none,
But feels and seals this union.
Even the tell Furies are appeased,
The good applaud, the lost are eased.
Love's hearts are faithful, but not fond,
Bound for the just, but not beyond;
Not glad, as the low-loving herd,
Of self in others still preferred,
But they have heartily designed
The benefit of broad mankind.
And they serve men austerely,
After their own genius, clearly,
Without a false humility;
For this is love's nobility,
Not to scatter bread and gold,
Goods and raiment bought and sold,
But to hold fast his simple sense,
And speak the speech of innocence,
And with hand, and body, and blood,
To make his bosom-counsel good:
For he that feeds men, serveth few,
He serves all, who dares be true.
David Herbert Lawrence |
Look at them standing there in authority
As if it could have any effect any more.
Pillars of white bronze standing rigid, lest the skies fall.
What a job they've got to keep it up.
Their poor, idealist foreheads naked capitals
To the entablature of clouded heaven.
When the skies are going to fall, fall they will
In a great chute and rush of d?b?cle downwards.
Oh and I wish the high and super-gothic heavens would come down now,
The heavens above, that we yearn to and aspire to.
I do not yearn, nor aspire, for I am a blind Samson.
And what is daylight to me that I should look skyward?
Only I grope among you, pale-faces, caryatids, as among a forest of pillars that hold up the dome of high ideal heaven
Which is my prison,
And all these human pillars of loftiness, going stiff, metallic-stunned with the weight of their responsibility
I stumble against them.
Stumbling-blocks, painful ones.
To keep on holding up this ideal civilisation
Must be excruciating: unless you stiffen into metal, when it is easier to stand stock rigid than to move.
This is why I tug at them, individually, with my arm round their waist
The human pillars.
They are not stronger than I am, blind Samson.
The house sways.
I shall be so glad when it comes down.
I am so tired of the limitations of their Infinite.
I am so sick of the pretensions of the Spirit.
I am so weary of pale-face importance.
Am I not blind, at the round-turning mill?
Then why should I fear their pale faces?
Or love the effulgence of their holy light,
The sun of their righteousness?
To me, all faces are dark,
All lips are dusky and valved.
Save your lips, O pale-faces,
Which are slips of metal,
Like slits in an automatic-machine, you columns of give-and-take.
To me, the earth rolls ponderously, superbly
Coming my way without forethought or afterthought.
To me, men's footfalls fall with a dull, soft rumble, ominous and lovely,
Coming my way.
But not your foot-falls, pale-faces,
They are a clicketing of bits of disjointed metal
Working in motion.
To me, men are palpable, invisible nearnesses in the dark
Sending out magnetic vibrations of warning, pitch-dark throbs of invitation.
But you, pale-faces,
You are painful, harsh-surfaced pillars that give off nothing except rigidity,
And I jut against you if I try to move, for you are everywhere, and I am blind,
Sightless among all your visuality,
You staring caryatids.
See if I don't bring you down, and all your high opinion
And all your ponderous roofed-in erection of right and wrong
Your particular heavens,
With a smash.
See if your skies aren't falling!
And my head, at least, is thick enough to stand it, the smash.
See if I don't move under a dark and nude, vast heaven
When your world is in ruins, under your fallen skies.
See if I am not Lord of the dark and moving hosts
Before I die.
Robert Louis Stevenson |
I DO not fear to own me kin
To the glad clods in which spring flowers begin;
Or to my brothers, the great trees,
That speak with pleasant voices in the breeze,
Loud talkers with the winds that pass;
Or to my sister, the deep grass.
Of such I am, of such my body is,
That thrills to reach its lips to kiss.
That gives and takes with wind and sun and rain
And feels keen pleasure to the point of pain.
Of such are these,
The brotherhood of stalwart trees,
The humble family of flowers,
That make a light of shadowy bowers
Or star the edges of the bent:
They give and take sweet colour and sweet scent;
They joy to shed themselves abroad;
And tree and flower and grass and sod
Thrill and leap and live and sing
With silent voices in the Spring.
Hence I not fear to yield my breath,
Since all is still unchanged by death;
Since in some pleasant valley I may be,
Clod beside clod, or tree by tree,
Long ages hence, with her I love this hour;
And feel a lively joy to share
With her the sun and rain and air,
To taste her quiet neighbourhood
As the dumb things of field and wood,
The clod, the tree, and starry flower,
Alone of all things have the power.
William Strode |
What thing is that, nor felt nor seene
Till it bee given? a present for a Queene:
A fine conceite to give and take the like:
The giver yet is farther for to seeke;
The taker doth possesse nothing the more,
The giver hee hath nothing lesse in store:
And given once that nature hath it still,
You cannot keepe or leave it if you will:
The workmanshippe is counted very small,
The labour is esteemed naught at all:
But to conclude, this gift is such indeede,
That, if some see't 'twill make theyr hearts to bleede
William Butler Yeats |
O but we talked at large before
The sixteen men were shot,
But who can talk of give and take,
What should be and what not
While those dead men are loitering there
To stir the boiling pot?
You say that we should still the land
Till Germany's overcome;
But who is there to argue that
Now Pearse is deaf and dumb?
And is their logic to outweigh
MacDonagh's bony thumb?
How could you dream they'd listen
That have an ear alone
For those new comrades they have found,
Lord Edward and Wolfe Tone,
Or meddle with our give and take
That converse bone to bone?
Robert Burns |
YESTREEN I had a pint o’ wine,
A place where body saw na;
Yestreen lay on this breast o’ mine
The gowden locks of Anna.
The hungry Jew in wilderness,
Rejoicing o’er his manna,
Was naething to my hinny bliss
Upon the lips of Anna.
Ye monarchs, take the East and West
Frae Indus to Savannah;
Gie me, within my straining grasp,
The melting form of Anna:
There I’ll despise Imperial charms,
An Empress or Sultana,
While dying raptures in her arms
I give and take wi’ Anna!
Awa, thou flaunting God of Day!
Awa, thou pale Diana!
Ilk Star, gae hide thy twinkling ray,
When I’m to meet my Anna!
Come, in thy raven plumage, Night,
(Sun, Moon, and Stars, withdrawn a’;)
And bring an angel-pen to write
My transports with my Anna!
POSTSCRIPTThe Kirk an’ State may join an’ tell,
To do sic things I maunna:
The Kirk an’ State may gae to hell,
And I’ll gae to my Anna.
She is the sunshine o’ my e’e,
To live but her I canna;
Had I on earth but wishes three,
The first should be my Anna.
Robert Louis Stevenson |
IN the green and gallant Spring,
Love and the lyre I thought to sing,
And kisses sweet to give and take
By the flowery hawthorn brake.
Now is russet Autumn here,
Death and the grave and winter drear,
And I must ponder here aloof
While the rain is on the roof.
Robert Louis Stevenson |
LET love go, if go she will.
Seek not, O fool, her wanton flight to stay.
Of all she gives and takes away
The best remains behind her still.
The best remains behind; in vain
Joy she may give and take again,
Joy she may take and leave us pain,
If yet she leave behind
The constant mind
To meet all fortunes nobly, to endure
All things with a good heart, and still be pure,
Still to be foremost in the foremost cause,
And still be worthy of the love that was.
Love coming is omnipotent indeed,
But not Love going.
Let her go.
Springs in the favouring Summer air, and grows,
And waxes strong; and when the Summer goes,
Remains, a perfect tree.
Joy she may give and take again,
Joy she may take and leave us pain.
O Love, and what care we?
For one thing thou hast given, O Love, one thing
Is ours that nothing can remove;
And as the King discrowned is still a King,
The unhappy lover still preserves his love.