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THEL'S MOTTO

Does the Eagle know what is in the pit?
Or wilt thou go ask the Mole?
Can Wisdom be put in a siler rod?
Or Loe in a golden bowl?
!rontspie"e
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The daughters o& Mne Seraphim led round their sunn' &lo"ks(
)ll but the 'oungest* she in paleness sought the se"ret air(
To &ade awa' like morning beaut' &rom her mortal da'*
Down b' the rier o& )dona her so&t oi"e is heard(
)nd thus her gentle lamentation &alls like morning dew+
,O li&e o& this our spring- wh' &ades the lotus o& the water?
Wh' &ade these "hildren o& the spring( born but to smile . &all?
)h- Thel is like a watr' bow( and like a parting "loud(
Like a re&le"tion in a glass( like shadows in the water(
Like dreams o& in&ants( like a smile upon an in&ant's &a"e(
Like the doe's oi"e( like transient da'( like musi" in the air/
)h- gentle ma' % la' me down( and gentle rest m' head(
)nd gentle sleep the sleep o& death( and gentle hear the oi"e
O& him that walketh in the garden in the eening time/,
The Lil' o& the alle'( breathing in the humble grass
)nswer'd the loel' maid and said+ ,% am a watr' weed(
)nd % am er' small( and loe to dwell in lowl' ales*
So weak( the gilded butter&l' s"ar"e per"hes on m' head*
0et % am isited &rom heaen( and he that smiles on all
Walks in the alle' and ea"h morn oer me spreads his hand(
Sa'ing+ '1e2oi"e( thou humble grass( thou new3born lil' &lower(
Thou gentle maid o& silent alle's and o& modest brooks*
!or thou shalt be "lothed in light( and &ed with morning manna(
Till summer's heat melts thee beside the &ountains and the springs
To &lourish in eternal ales/' Then wh' should Thel "omplain?
Wh' should the mistress o& the ales o& Har utter a sigh?,
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She "easd and smild in tears( then sat down in her siler shrine/
Thel answered+ ,O thou little irgin o& the pea"e&ul alle'(
5iing to those that "annot "rae( the oi"eless( the o'ertired*
Th' breath doth nourish the inno"ent lamb( he smells th' milk' garments(
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He "rops th' &lowers( while thou sittest smiling in his &a"e(
Wiping his mild and meekin mouth &rom all "ontagious taints/
Th' wine doth puri&' the golden hone'* th' per&ume(
Whi"h thou dost s"atter on eer' little blade o& grass that springs(
1eies the milked "ow( . tames the &ire3breathing steed/
7ut Thel is like a &aint "loud kindled at the rising sun+
% anish &rom m' pearl' throne( and who shall &ind m' pla"e?,
,8ueen o& the ales(, the Lil' answered( ,ask the tender "loud(
)nd it shall tell thee wh' it glitters in the morning sk'(
)nd wh' it s"atters its bright beaut' thro' the humid air/
Des"end( O little "loud( . hoer be&ore the e'es o& Thel/,
The Cloud des"ended( and the Lil' bowd her modest head(
)nd went to mind her numerous "harge among the erdant grass/
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,O little Cloud(, the irgin said( ,% "harge thee tell to me(
Wh' thou "omplainest not when in one hour thou &ade awa'+
Then we shall seek thee but not &ind* ah( Thel is like to Thee/
% pass awa'( 'et % "omplain( and no one hears m' oi"e/,
The Cloud then shew'd his golden head . his bright &orm emerg'd(
Hoering and glittering on the air be&ore the &a"e o& Thel/
,O irgin( know'st thou not our steeds drink o& the golden springs
Where Luah doth renew his horses? Look'st thou on m' 'outh(
)nd &earest thou be"ause % anish and am seen no more(
:othing remains? O maid( % tell thee( when % pass awa'(
%t is to ten&old li&e( to loe( to pea"e( and raptures hol'+
;nseen des"ending( weigh m' light wings upon balm' &lowers(
)nd "ourt the &air e'ed dew( to take me to her shining tent+
The weeping irgin trembling kneels be&ore the risen sun(
Till we arise link'd in a golden band( and neer part(
7ut walk united( bearing &ood to all our tender &lowers/,
,Dost thou O little Cloud? % &ear that % am not like thee*
!or % walk through the ales o& Har and smell the sweetest &lowers(
7ut % &eed not the little &lowers* % hear the warbling birds(
7ut % &eed not the warbling birds* the' &l' and seek their &ood*
7ut Thel delights in these no more( be"ause % &ade awa'(
)nd all shall sa'( 'Without a use this shining woman li'd(
Or did she onl' lie to be at death the &ood o& worms?',
The Cloud re"lind upon his air' throne and answer'd thus+
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,Then i& thou art the &ood o& worms( O irgin o& the skies(
How great th' use( how great th' blessing- Eer' thing that lies
Lies not alone( nor &or itsel&* &ear not( and % will "all
The weak worm &rom its lowl' bed( and thou shalt hear its oi"e/
Come &orth( worm o& the silent alle'( to th' pensie <ueen/,
The helpless worm arose( and sat upon the Lil''s lea&(
)nd the bright Cloud saild on( to &ind his partner in the ale/
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Then Thel astonish'd iew'd the Worm upon its dew' bed/
,)rt thou a Worm? %mage o& weakness( art thou but a Worm?
% see thee like an in&ant wrapped in the Lil''s lea&*
)h( weep not( little oi"e( thou "an'st not speak( but thou "an'st weep/
%s this a Worm? % see thee la' helpless . naked( weeping(
)nd none to answer( none to "herish thee with mother's smiles/,
The Clod o& Cla' heard the Worm's oi"e( . raisd her pit'ing head*
She bow'd oer the weeping in&ant( and her li&e e>hal'd
%n milk' &ondness* then on Thel she &i>'d her humble e'es/
?5enesis 4+6 Then the Lord 5od &ormed a man?"@ &rom the dust o& the ground and
breathed into his nostrils the breath o& li&e( and the man be"ame a liing being/@
,O beaut' o& the ales o& Har- we lie not &or ourseles*
Thou seest me the meanest thing( and so % am indeed*
M' bosom o& itsel& is "old( and o& itsel& is dark(
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7ut he that loes the lowl'( pours his oil upon m' head(
?#salms+ Thou preparest a table be&ore me in the presen"e o& mine enemies+ thou
anointest m' head with oil* m' "up runneth oer@
)nd kisses me( and binds his nuptial bands around m' breast(
)nd sa's+ 'Thou mother o& m' "hildren( % hae loed thee
)nd % hae gien thee a "rown that none "an take awa'/'
7ut how this is( sweet maid( % know not( and % "annot know*
% ponder( and % "annot ponder* 'et % lie and loe/,
The daughter o& beaut' wip'd her pit'ing tears with her white eil(
)nd said+ ,)las- % knew not this( and there&ore did % weep/
That 5od would loe a Worm( % knew( and punish the eil &oot
That( wil&ul( bruis'd its helpless &orm* but that he "herish'd it
With milk and oil % neer knew* and there&ore did % weep(
)nd % "omplaind in the mild air( be"ause % &ade awa'(
)nd la' me down in th' "old bed( and leae m' shining lot/,
,8ueen o& the ales(, the matron Cla' answered( ,% heard th' sighs(
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)nd all th' moans &lew o'er m' roo&( but % hae "all'd them down/
Wilt thou( O 8ueen( enter m' house? 'tis gien thee to enter
)nd to return+ &ear nothing( enter with th' irgin &eet/,
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The eternal gates' terri&i" porter li&ted the northern bar+
Thel enter'd in . saw the se"rets o& the land unknown/
She saw the "ou"hes o& the dead( . where the &ibrous roots
O& eer' heart on earth in&i>es deep its restless twists+
) land o& sorrows . o& tears where neer smile was seen/
She wanderd in the land o& "louds thro' alle's dark( listning
Dolours . lamentations* waiting o&t beside a dew' grae(
She stood in silen"e( listning to the oi"es o& the ground(
Till to her own grae plot she "ame( . there she sat down(
)nd heard this oi"e o& sorrow breathed &rom the hollow pit+
,Wh' "annot the Ear be "losed to its own destru"tion?
Or the glistning E'e to the poison o& a smile?
Wh' are E'elids stord with arrows read' drawn(
Where a thousand &ighting men in ambush lie?
Or an E'e o& gi&ts . gra"es( show'ring &ruits and "oined gold?
Wh' a Tongue impress'd with hone' &rom eer' wind?
Wh' an Ear( a whirlpool &ier"e to draw "reations in?
Wh' a :ostril wide inhaling terror( trembling( and a&&right?
Wh' a tender "urb upon the 'outh&ul burning bo'?
Wh' a little "urtain o& &lesh on the bed o& our desire?,
The Birgin started &rom her seat( . with a shriek
!led ba"k unhinderd till she "ame into the ales o& Har/
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