Clouds rise. I stand
Here under swing of homing gulls,
And watch a wave, crested and beautiful,
Come in to cover and erase
Like a last trace, a final word
Of poem, the delicate cross-bow mark
Of bird, left in the ebbing sand.
Euclid alone has looked on Beauty bare
Euclid alone has looked on Beauty bare.
Let all who prate of Beauty hold their peace,
And lay them prone upon the earth and cease
To ponder on themselves, the while they stare
At nothing, intricately drawn nowhere
In shapes of shifting lineage; let geese
Gabble and hiss, but heroes seek release
From dusty bondage into luminous air.
O blinding hour, O holy, terrible day,
When first the shaft into his vision shone
Of light anatomized! Euclid alone
Has looked on Beauty bare. Fortunate they
Who, though once only and then but far away,
Have heard her massive sandal set on stone.
Oh, sleep forever in the Latmian cave
Oh, sleep forever in the Latmian cave,
Mortal Endymion, darling of the Moon!
Her silver garments by the senseless wave
Shouldered and dropped and on the shingle strewn,
Her fluttering hand against her forehead pressed,
Her scattered looks that trouble all the sky,
Her rapid footsteps running down the west--
Of all her altered state, oblivious lie!
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Publication information: Book title: Modern Verse in English, 1900-1950. Contributors: David Cecil - Editor, Allen Tate - Editor. Publisher: Macmillan. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 1958. Page number: 349.
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