CHORUS OF SPIRITS
Palace-roof of cloudless nights,
Paradise of golden lights,
Deep, Immeasurable, Vast,
Which art now, and which wert then;
Of the eternal Where and When,
Presence chamber, Temple, Home,
Of acts and ages yet to come!
Glorious shapes have life in thee--
Earth and all Earth's company,
Living globes which ever throng
Thy deep chasms and wildernesses,
And green worlds that glide along,
And swift stars with flashing tresses,
And icy moons most cold and bright,
And mighty suns, beyond the Night,
Atoms of intensest light!
Even thy name is as a God,
Heaven! for thou art the abode
Of that Power which is the glass
Wherein man his nature sees;--
Generations as they pass
Worship thee with bended knees--
Their unremaining Gods and they
Like a river roll away--
Thou remainest such--alway!--
A REMOTER VOICE
Thou art but the Mind's first chamber,
Round which its young fancies clamber
Like weak insects in a cave
Lighted up by stalactites;
But the portal of the grave,
Where a world of new delights
Will make thy best glories seem
But a dim and noonday gleam
From the shadow of a dream.
A LOUDER AND STILL REMOTER VOICE
Peace! the abyss is wreathed with scorn
At your presumption, Atom-born!
What is Heaven? and what are ye
Who its brief expanse inherit?
What are suns and spheres which flee
With the instinct of that spirit
Of which ye are but a part?
Drops which Nature's mighty heart
Drives through thinnest veins. Depart!
What is Heaven? a globe of dew
Filling in the morning new
Some eyed flower whose young leaves waken
On an unimagined world.
Constellated suns unshaken,
Orbits measurless, are furled
In that frail and fading sphere
With ten million gathered there
To tremble, gleam, and disappear!