How should I seek to make a song for thee When all my music is to moan thy name? That long sad monotone - the same - the same - Matching the mute insatiable sea That throbs with life's bewitching agony, Too long to measure and too fierce to tame! An hurtful joy, a fascinating shame Is this great ache that grips the heart of me.
Even as a cancer, so this passion gnaws Away my soul, and will not ease its jaws Till I am dead. Then let me die! Who knows But that this corpse committed to the earth May be the occasion of some happier birth? Spring's earliest snowdrop? Summer's latest rose?
Thou knowest what asp hath fixed its lethal tooth In the white breast that trembled like a flower At thy name whispered. thou hast marked how hour By hour its poison hath dissolved my youth, Half skilled to agonise, half skilled to soothe This passion ineluctable, this power Slave to its single end, to storm the tower That holdeth thee, who art Authentic Truth.
O golden hawk! O lidless eye! Behold How the grey creeps upon the shuddering gold! Still I will strive! That thou mayst sweep Swift on the dead from thine all-seeing steep - And the unutterable word by spoken.