(S 1)
Then like an anthem from the heart’s lucent cave
A voice soared up whose magic sound could turn
440 The poignant weeping of the earth to sobs
Of rapture and her cry to spirit song.
(S 2)
“O human image of the deathless word,
How hast thou seen beyond the topaz walls
The gleaming sisters of the divine gate,
445 Summoned the genii of their wakeful sleep,
And under revelation’s arches forced
The carved thought-shrouded doors to swing apart,
Unlocked the avenues of spiritual sight
And taught the entries of a heavenlier state
450 To thy rapt soul that bore the golden key?
(S 3)
In thee the secret sight man’s blindness missed EoS
Has opened its view past Time, my chariot-course,
And death, my tunnel which I drive through life
To reach my unseen distances of bliss.
(S 4)
455 I am the hushed search of the jealous gods
Pursuing my wisdom’s vast mysterious work
Seized in the thousand meeting ways of heaven.
(S 5)
I am the beauty of the unveiled ray
Drawing through the deep roads of the infinite night
460 The unconquerable pilgrim soul of earth
Beneath the flaring torches of the stars.
(S 6)
I am the inviolable Ecstasy; EoS
They who have looked on me, shall grieve no more.
(S 7)
The eyes that live in night shall see my form.
(S 8)
465 On the pale shores of foaming steely straits EoS
That flow beneath a grey tormented sky,
Two powers from one original ecstasy born
Pace near but parted in the life of man;
One leans to earth, the other yearns to the skies:
470 Heaven in its rapture dreams of perfect earth,
Earth in its sorrow dreams of perfect heaven.
(S 9)
The two longing to join, yet walk apart, EoS
Idly divided by their vain conceits;
They are kept from their oneness by enchanted fears;
475 Sundered mysteriously by miles of thought,
They gaze across the silent gulfs of sleep.
(S 10)
Or side by side reclined upon my vasts
Like bride and bridegroom magically divorced
They wake to yearn, but never can they clasp
480 While thinly flickering hesitates uncrossed
Between the lovers on their nuptial couch
The shadowy eidolon of a sword.
(S 11)
But when the phantom flame-edge fails undone, EoS
Then never more can space or time divide
485 The lover from the loved; Space shall draw back
Her great translucent curtain, Time shall be
The quivering of the spirit’s endless bliss.
(S 12)
Attend that moment of celestial fate.
(S 13)
Meanwhile you two shall serve the dual law
490 Which only now the scouts of vision glimpse
Who pressing through the forest of their thoughts
Have found the narrow bridges of the gods.
(S 14)
Wait patient of the brittle bars of form
Making division your delightful means
495 Of happy oneness rapturously enhanced
By attraction in the throbbing air between.
(S 15)
Yet if thou wouldst abandon the vexed world,
Careless of the dark moan of things below,
Tread down the isthmus, overleap the flood,
500 Cancel thy contract with the labouring Force;
Renounce the tie that joins thee to earth-kind,
Cast off thy sympathy with mortal hearts.
(S 16)
Arise, vindicate thy spirit’s conquered right:
Relinquishing thy charge of transient breath,
505 Under the cold gaze of the indifferent stars
Leaving thy borrowed body on the sod,
Ascend, O soul, into thy blissful home.
(S 17)
Here in the playground of the eternal Child
Or in domains the wise Immortals tread
510 Roam with thy comrade splendour under skies
Spiritual lit by an unsetting sun,
As godheads live who care not for the world
And share not in the toil of Nature’s powers:
Absorbed in their self-ecstasy they dwell.
(S 18)
515 Cast off the ambiguous myth of earth’s desire,
O immortal, to felicity arise.”
(S 19)
On Savitri listening in her tranquil heart
To the harmony of the ensnaring voice
A joy exceeding earth’s and heaven’s poured down,
520 The bliss of an unknown eternity,
A rapture from some waiting Infinite.
(S 20)
A smile came rippling out in her wide eyes,
Its confident felicity’s messenger
As if the first beam of the morning sun
525 Rippled along two wakened lotus-pools.
(S 21)
“O besetter of man’s soul with life and death EoS
And the world’s pleasure and pain and Day and Night,
Tempting his heart with the far lure of heaven,
Testing his strength with the close touch of hell,
530 I climb not to thy everlasting Day,
Even as I have shunned thy eternal Night.
(S 22)
To me who turn not from thy terrestrial Way,
Give back the other self my nature asks.
(S 23)
Thy spaces need him not to help their joy;
535 Earth needs his beautiful spirit made by thee
To fling delight down like a net of gold.
(S 24)
Earth is the chosen place of mightiest souls;
Earth is the heroic spirit’s battlefield,
The forge where the Archmason shapes his works.
(S 25)
540 Thy servitudes on earth are greater, King,
Than all the glorious liberties of heaven.
(S 26)
The heavens were once to me my natural home,
I too have wandered in star-jewelled groves,
Paced sun-gold pastures and moon-silver swards
545 And heard the harping laughter of their streams
And lingered under branches dropping myrrh;
I too have revelled in the fields of light EoS
Touched by the ethereal raiment of the winds,
Thy wonder-rounds of music I have trod,
550 Lived in the rhyme of bright unlabouring thoughts,
I have beat swift harmonies of rapture vast,
Danced in spontaneous measures of the soul
The great and easy dances of the gods.
(S 27)
O fragrant are the lanes thy children walk
555 And lovely is the memory of their feet
Amid the wonder-flowers of Paradise:
A heavier tread is mine, a mightier touch.
(S 28)
There where the gods and demons battle in night
Or wrestle on the borders of the Sun,
560 Taught by the sweetness and the pain of life
To bear the uneven strenuous beat that throbs
Against the edge of some divinest hope,
To dare the impossible with these pangs of search,
In me the spirit of immortal love
565 Stretches its arms out to embrace mankind.
(S 29)
Too far thy heavens for me from suffering men.
(S 30)
Imperfect is the joy not shared by all.
(S 31)
O to spread forth, O to encircle and seize
More hearts till love in us has filled thy world!
(S 32)
570 O life, the life beneath the wheeling stars! EoS
(S 33)
For victory in the tournament with death,
For bending of the fierce and difficult bow,
For flashing of the splendid sword of God!
(S 34)
O thou who soundst the trumpet in the lists, EoS
575 Part not the handle from the untried steel,
Take not the warrior with his blow unstruck.
(S 35)
Are there not still a million fights to wage?
(S 36)
O king-smith, clang on still thy toil begun,
Weld us to one in thy strong smithy of life.
(S 37)
580 Thy fine-curved jewelled hilt call Savitri,
Thy blade’s exultant smile name Satyavan.
(S 38)
Fashion to beauty, point us through the world.
(S 39)
Break not the lyre before the song is found;
Are there not still unnumbered chants to weave?
(S 40)
585 O subtle-souled musician of the years,
Play out what thou hast fluted on my stops;
Arise from the strain their first wild plaint divined
And that discover which is yet unsung.
(S 41)
I know that I can lift man’s soul to God,
590 I know that he can bring the Immortal down.
(S 42)
Our will labours permitted by thy will
And without thee an empty roar of storm,
A senseless whirlwind is the Titan’s force
And without thee a snare the strength of gods.
(S 43)
595 Let not the inconscient gulf swallow man’s race
That through earth’s ignorance struggles towards thy Light.
(S 44)
O Thunderer with the lightnings of the soul,
Give not to darkness and to death thy sun,
Achieve thy wisdom’s hidden firm decree
600 And the mandate of thy secret world-wide love.”
(S 45)
Her words failed lost in thought’s immensities
Which seized them at the limits of their cry
And hid their meaning in the distances
That stir to more than ever speech has won
605 From the Unthinkable, end of all our thought,
And the Ineffable from whom all words come.