And by my spirit made marvellous here by thee,
Poured out all clear into the gold of thee,
Not myself only do I know; I have
Golden within me the whole fate of man:
That every flesh and soul belongs to one
Continual joyward ravishment, whose end
Is here, in this perfection. Now I know—
For all my speculation soareth up,
A bird taking eternity for air,—
Now being mixt with thee, in the burning midst
Of Beauty for my sense and mind and soul,—
That life hath highest gone which hath most joy.
For like great wings forcefully smiting air
And driving it along in rushing rivers,
Desire of joy beats mightily pulsing forward
The world’s one nature, and all the loose lives therein,
Carried and greatly streaming on a gale
Of craving, swept fiercely along in beauty;—
Like a great weather of wind and shining sun,
When the airs pick up whole huge waves of sea,
Crumble them in their grasp and high aloft
Sow them glittering, a white watery dust,
To company with light: so we are driven
Onward and upward in a wind of beauty,
Until man’s race be wielded by its joy
Into some high incomparable day,
Where perfectly delight may know itself,—
No longer need a strife to know itself,
Only by its prevailing over pain.
She. Beloved, but no pain may strive with us.
No, for we are flown far ahead of life:
The feet of our Spirit have wonderfully trod
The dangers of the rushing fate of life,
As summer-searching birds tread with their wings
Mountainous surges in the air. But many,
Not strongly fledge to ride the world’s great rapture,
Must break, down fallen into steep confusion,
Where we climb easily and tower with joy.
Nevertheless doth life foretell in us
How it shall all make seizure at the last
Upon this height of ecstasy, this fort
Life like an army storms: Captains we are
In the great assault; and where we stand alone
Within these hours, built like establisht flames
Round us, at long last all man’s life shall stand
At peace with joy, wearing delighted sense
As meadows wear their golden pleasure of flowers.
Certain my heart dwells in these builded hours,
That there is no more beauty beyond thee.
Thou art my utter beauty; and—behold
The marvel, God in Heaven!—I am thine.
Therefore we know, in this height-guarded place
Whereto the speed of our desire hath brought us;
Here in this safety crowning, like a fort
Built upon topmost peaks, the height of beauty,—
We know to be glad of life as we were gods
Timelessly glad of deity; yea, to enjoy
Fleshly, spiritual Being till the swift
Torrent of glee (as hurled star-dust can change
Dim earthly weather to a moment like the sun,)
Doth startle life to self-adoring godhead,—
Divine body of Power and divine
Burning soul of Light and self-desire.
And having given ourselves all to amazement,
We are made like a prophesying song
Of life all joy, a bride in the arms of God.—
Yea, God shall marry his people at the last;
And every man and woman who has sworn
That only joy can make this Being sacred,
Weaves at the wedding-garment.