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A Thought From Emerson

One of the best of men; his words
Are radiant with the mystic light
That never shone on land or sea;
His thoughts fall like the song of birds,
That even through the stormiest night
Must tell us of their ecstasy.

He knew the earth-pangs, yet he so
Adored the Heart that rules behind,
And trod the path of self-control
So calm and steadfast; well we know
The sweet expressions of his mind
Are echoes of the Over-soul.

Not for the flight itself so much
He loved to soar; he saw beyond,
And like a homing pigeon flew;
His deepest instincts bade him touch
Those Heavenly Portals, 'twas the bond
Of his true home that drew him through.

How oft we love to soar with him,
To catch the spirit he possessed,
And see the things he saw, and yet
How heavy are our eyes, and dim,
The spirit strives within the breast,
Our feet within the stocks are set.

"Cripples and invalids," he said,
"We doubt not in the forest there
Are bounding fawns, and springing flowers,
Though we be writhing on our bed,
Though mortal pain our bodies bear,
Our minds believe in peaceful hours."

"The fiery soul said, 'let me be
A blot on this fair world, become
The loneliest, poorest sufferer,
The Truth is still the Truth to me
Though frost and darkness and the tomb,
Be mine, the Truth can never err.'

"Above us still the stars are bright,
The Law of Love eternal stands,
A clod of earth the Truth shall seize
And fashion to a man, and smite
This earthly prison, burst the bands,
And give the Soul the Heavenly keys."

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Ernest S. Leigh

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