The Spike or Victoria College Review 1947
'Action' murmured the lips of the poet and action, softly,
To the wanderer bending before the incomprehensible cavern,
And 'action' again faintly, from the caverns behind the cavern,
Unfathomable cells of unlistened-to weavers of theories
The un-read, misled theologians, and the long-forgotten philosophers.
'Action' whispered those lips pale in the darkness
Do you indeed closed marble eyes, see clearly?
Is it the key to the wanderers life you are seeking
On escape to an earth of fantasy fleeting and shadow
Built into dreams by your subtle imagination
From a lovely look half seen on half-known faces
From a creek or sky-torn tree in once-glimpsed places?
The wanderer leans on the rock by the oracle's temple
Black hole in the black hill blackly shrouded
By yews whose limbs are ebony and leaves jet frozen—
There only the sky, half cloudy, half starry, is beautiful.
I too have wandered the dim paths sometimes—
Precious is light that shines in darkness—
Street lamp through trees, through mist quieter than raindrops,
Scent of flowers in a shut room entered in darkness,
Beam of a car on the wall of a child's room, flashing,
Lustre of pearls clasped to the sea's grey bosom.
Not joy only, not laughter solely
A gay voice bantering,
Smile of a friend, warmly;
No, not love only,
Not love only, but peace
And a deeper contentment.
'Tis here, on this high hill, matters not which hill,
Sea cliff, rise on the plain, what you will,
Only—overhead a broad sky sweeping
Down in blue stretches to the earth's crumples, leaping
Angrily up from dull green of gorse hedges
With scarcely a tinge of sunlight, silver on the cloud edges.
Only one breath of wind, secrets to whisper
No truant spirit near, that will not list her
A new bloom on the summer weeds that was dew at seven
And clean air, stolen by thought from an unbreathed heaven:
Take these from this high hill and, wanderer, taking
Find peace that shall still be peace when your heart is breaking.