Best Poems From
(31 May 1819 - 26 March 1892)
I MET a Seer,
Passing the hues and objects of the world,
The fields of art and learning, pleasure, sense,
To glean Eidólons.
Put in thy chants, said he,
No more the puzzling hour, nor day--nor segments, parts, put in,
Put first before the rest, as light for all, and entrance-song of
That of Eidólons.
Ever the dim beginning;
Ever the growth, the rounding of the circle; 10
Ever the summit, and the merge at last, (to surely start again,)
Ever the mutable!
Ever materials, changing, crumbling, re-cohering;
Ever the ateliers, the factories divine,
Lo! I or you!
Or woman, man, or State, known or unknown,
We seeming solid wealth, strength, beauty build,
But really build Eidólons. 20
The ostent evanescent;
The substance of an artist's mood, or savan's studies long,
Or warrior's, martyr's, hero's toils,
To fashion his Eidólon.
Of every human life,
(The units gather'd, posted--not a thought, emotion, deed, left out;)
The whole, or large or small, summ'd, added up,
In its Eidólon.
The old, old urge;
Based on the ancient pinnacles, lo! newer, higher pinnacles; 30
From Science and the Modern still impell'd,
The old, old urge, Eidólons.
The present, now and here,
America's busy, teeming, intricate whirl,
Of aggregate and segregate, for only thence releasing,
These, with the past,
Of vanish'd lands--of all the reigns of kings across the sea,
Old conquerors, old campaigns, old sailors' voyages,
Joining Eidólons. 40
Densities, growth, façades,
Strata of mountains, soils, rocks, giant trees,
Far-born, far-dying, living long, to leave,
Exaltè, rapt, extatic,
The visible but their womb of birth,
Of orbic tendencies to shape, and shape, and shape,
The mighty Earth-Eidólon.
All space, all time,
(The stars, the terrible perturbations of the suns, 50
Swelling, collapsing, ending--serving their longer, shorter use,)
Fill'd with Eidólons only.
The noiseless myriads!
The infinite oceans where the rivers empty!
The separate, countless free identities, like eyesight;
The true realities, Eidólons.
Not this the World,
Nor these the Universes--they the Universes,
Purport and end--ever the permanent life of life,
Eidólons, Eidólons. 60
Beyond thy lectures, learn'd professor,
Beyond thy telescope or spectroscope, observer keen--beyond all
Beyond the doctor's surgery, anatomy--beyond the chemist with his
The entities of entities, Eidólons.
Unfix'd, yet fix'd;
Ever shall be--ever have been, and are,
Sweeping the present to the infinite future,
Eidólons, Eidólons, Eidólons.
The prophet and the bard,
Shall yet maintain themselves--in higher stages yet, 70
Shall mediate to the Modern, to Democracy--interpret yet to them,
God, and Eidólons.
And thee, My Soul!
Joys, ceaseless exercises, exaltations!
Thy yearning amply fed at last, prepared to meet,
Thy mates, Eidólons.
Thy Body permanent,
The Body lurking there within thy Body,
The only purport of the Form thou art--the real I myself,
An image, an Eidólon. 80
Thy very songs, not in thy songs;
No special strains to sing--none for itself;
But from the whole resulting, rising at last and floating,
A round, full-orb'd Eidólon.
Read more: america poems, hero poems, birth poems, future poems, strength poems, woman poems, song poems, world poems, beauty poems, sea poems, light poems, river poems, rose poems, change poems, star poems, women poems, tree poems
Locations And Times
LOCATIONS and times--what is it in me that meets them all, whenever
and wherever, and makes me at home?
Forms, colors, densities, odors--what is it in me that corresponds
Read more: home poems
Not Heat Flames Up And Consumes
NOT heat flames up and consumes,
Not sea-waves hurry in and out,
Not the air, delicious and dry, the air of the ripe summer, bears
lightly along white down-balls of myriads of seeds,
Wafted, sailing gracefully, to drop where they may;
Not these--O none of these, more than the flames of me, consuming,
burning for his love whom I love!
O none, more than I, hurrying in and out:
--Does the tide hurry, seeking something, and never give up? O I the
O nor down-balls, nor perfumes, nor the high, rain-emitting clouds,
are borne through the open air,
Any more than my Soul is borne through the open air,
Wafted in all directions, O love, for friendship, for you. 10
Read more: summer poems, rain poems, sea poems, love poems
Not My Enemies Ever Invade Me
NOT my enemies ever invade me--no harm to my pride from them I fear;
But the lovers I recklessly love--lo! how they master me!
Lo! me, ever open and helpless, bereft of my strength!
Utterly abject, grovelling on the ground before them.
Read more: strength poems, pride poems, fear poems, love poems