[Written for the Sentinel]


There travailed long within my consciousness
A song of gracious promise; unfulfilled
For poverty of words wherewith to clothe
In fitly chosen words its harmony.
For truth is beauty; all real beauty, truth,
Yet unexpressed is void of force and power.
Vain words came thronging, surging helplessly
Against the walls of my imprisoned thought,
As beat the longing wings of captive birds
Against restraining bars for liberty.

Humbly, at last I turn where oft before
Between the covers of a little book
Was found the fullest measure of content.
I scan its pages, find the truth I seek,
Learn this—that Mind possesses of itself
All beauty.* And not only learn I this,
But also learn, to Mind alone belongs
The power of expressing it as well.
And that which Mind possesses, man reflects,
And as reflection only can express.

Then to my now illuminated thought
Came understanding new and limitless;
And words no longer empty, but replete
With meaning, burst the bonds of fettered thought.
Emerging free from out its confined depths,
As breaks the morning light on darkened earth,
They rise on pinions inspirational.
Born without labor, free, and effortless,
Reflecting faintly that infinitude
But dimly seen by finite mortal sight.

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