Hawkes, Jacquetta - Symbols and Speculations - Soliloquy
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
I am too lonely now for solitude
For solitude has walls with windows in them
Where the self sits and looks out on the world
Burning as one tall candle in a prison.
I had a cell once and a visitor,
Golden he was and welcome as the day,
But soon he vanished, my life's brief meteor,
And I became, as walls slid back, to clay.
One dusty star unmoored and aimless blown
Through the pale millions of the Milky Way.
Abandoned now upon the general stream
I cannot think that each same face I pass
Still lives immured in some particular dream
And sees me only faintly through the glass.
Rather I feel our lives as weeds that waver
Tenuous green ribbons where the current goes;
Each one so short, continuous together
As onward through our ranks time gently flows.
And yet how sharply can the image change.
Beneath the giant roof of Olympia
The faces mount, range above circling range,
Florets that ring the bright disc of a flower.
Gripped at the centre of so great a gaze
Raddled Titania drives her glittering car;
While sad clowns clown, a lovely lady sways
Hung by one foot beneath a lofty star.
At the whip's tip the little people fly-
The dwarfs-fall headlong to leap up again,
Sacrifice for the self-devouring eye
These dancing mice, zapodidae of pain.
Here, like the massed rods of the retina,
Men are the organ of a hungry sight
That gazing in its own black pupil sees
Shapes that it cannot draw into the light.