Make your own free website on Tripod.com



 

ATALANTA IN CALYDON

Before the beginning of years,
Ther~ came to the making of man
Time, with a gift of tears;
Grief, with a glass that ran;
Pleasure, with pain for leaven;
Summer, with flowers that fell;
Remembrance fallen from heaven,
And madness risen from hell;
Strength without hands to smite;
Love that endures for a brezth;
Night, the shadow of light,
And life, the shaduw of dea
'th.

And the high gods took in hand
Fire, and the falling of tears,
And a measure of sliding sand
From under th" feet of the years;
And froth and drift of the sea;
And dust of the laboring earth;
And bodies of things to be
In the houses of death and of birth;
And wrought with weeping and laughter
,
And fashioned with loathing and love,
With life before and after
And death beneath and above,
For a day and a night and a morrow,
That his strength might endure for a span
With travail and heavy sorrow,
The holy spirit of (olan.
From the winds of the north and the south
They gathered as unto strife;
They breathed upon his mouth,
They filled his body with life;
Eyesight and speech they wrought,
For the veils of the soul therein,
A time for labor and thought,
A time to serve and to sin;
They gave him light in his
wa~s,
And love, and a space for delight,
And beauty and length of days,
And night, and sleep in
,the night.
His speech is a burning fire;
With his lips he travaileth;
In his heart is a blind desire,
In his eyes foreknowledge of death;
He weaves, and is clothed with derision
;
Sows, and he shall not reap;
His life is a watch or a vision,
Between a sleep and a sleep.

Algernon Swinburne
1837-1909

 

 

Back to Main Page