Poets' Corner - Frederick Tennyson - The Glory of Nature
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The Glory of Nature
- IF only once the chariot of the Morn
- Had scatter'd from its wheels the twilight dun,
- But once the unimaginable Sun
- Flash'd godlike thro' perennial clouds forlorn,
- And shown us Beauty for a moment born;
- If only once blind eyes had seen the Spring,
- Waking amid the triumphs of midnoon;
- But once had seen the lovely Summer boon
- Pass by in state like a full-robed King,
- The waters dance, the woodlands laugh and sing;
- If only once deaf ears had heard the joy
- Of the wild birds, or morning breezes blowing,
- Or silver fountains from their caverns flowing,
- Or the deep-voiced rivers rolling by;
- Then Night eternal fallen from the sky;
- If only once weird Time had rent asunder
- The curtain of the Clouds, and shown us Night
- Climbing into the awful Infinite
- Those stairs whose steps are worlds, above and under,
- Glory on glory, wonder upon wonder!
- The Lightnings lit the Earthquake on his way;
- The sovran Thunder spoken to the World;
- The realm-wide banners of the Wind unfurl'd;
- Earth-prison'd Fires broke loose into the day;
- Or the great Seas awoke -- then slept for aye!
- Ah! sure the heart of Man, too strongly tried
- By Godlike Presences so vast and fair,
- Withering with dread, or sick with love's despair,
- Had wept for ever, and to Heaven cried,
- Or struck with lightnings of delight had died.
- But He, though heir of Immortality,
- With mortal dust too feeble for the sight,
- Draws thro' a veil God's overwhelming light;
- Use arms the Soul -- anon there moveth by
- A more majestic Angel -- and we die!
- Frederick Tennyson
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