“God’s heart! the antics, as they toil and shove!
One grabs a coin, one life, another love.
All shriek, ‘The prize is mine!’ as men possessed.
I was not fooled at anything thereof.
Rather I hated them, and scorned for slaves;
‘Fools! all your treasure is at last the grave’s!'” [via]
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- “I would not have her love a thing so vile, I would not link her life with such as mine! O cursed sin, to leave my soul too high To cheat the shrine! I drave Love forth, Love lingered yet awhile So that I might not quite win Hell before I die.”
- “One book told me of a secret community of saints in possession of every spiritual grace, of the keys of the treasure of Nature. The members of this church lived their secret life of sanctuary in the world, radiating light and love on all those that came within their scope.”
- “Oh! my pure heart! Adulterous love began So subtly to identify the man With its own perfumed thoughts. So steals the grape Into the furtive brain–a spirit shape Kisses my spirit as no woman can. I love her–yes; and I have no escape. I never spoke, I never looked! But she Saw through the curtains of the soul of me, And loved me also! It is very well. I am well started on the road to Hell.”
- “The king did start, Gripped my strong hands, and held me to his heart, And could not speak a moment. Then he set A curb of sorrow and subdued its dart. ‘Go! and the blessing of high God attend Thy path, and lead thee to the doubtful end. No tongue that secret ever may reveal. Thy soul is god-like and thy frame is steel; Thou mayst win the quest–the king, thy friend, Gives thee his sword to keep thee–Gereth, kneel! ‘I dub thee Earl; arise!’ And then there rings The queen’s voice: ‘Shall my love not match the king’s? Here, from my finger drawn, this gem of power Shall guard thee in some unimagined hour. It hath strange virtue over mortal things. I freely give it for thy stirrup’s dower.’ I left the presence. Now the buffeting wind Gladdens my face–I leave the court behind. Am I Stark mad? My face grows grim and grave; I see–O Mary Mother, speak and save! I stare and stare until mine eyes are blind– There was no jewel in the ring she gave!”
- “‘Even I myself–my youth within me said: Go, seek this folly; fear not for the dead, And God is with thine arm! I reached the ridge, And saw the river and the ghastly bridge I told you of. Even then, even there, I fled. Nor knight, nor king–a miserable midge! ‘Yet from my shame I dare not turn and run. My oath grows urgent as my days are done. Almost mine hour is on me: for its sake I tell you this, as if my heart should break:– The infinite desire–a burning sun! The listening fear–the sun-devouring snake!'”