THE CLEARER SELF
by: Archibald Lampman (1861-1899)
- EFORE me
grew the human soul,
- And after I am dead and gone,
- Through grades of effort and control
- The marvellous work shall still go on.
- Each mortal in his little span
- Hath only lived, if he have shown
- What greatness there can be in man
- Above the measured and the known;
- How through the ancient layers of night,
- In gradual victory secure,
- Grows ever with increasing light
- The Energy serene and pure:
- The Soul that from a monstrous past,
- From age to age, from hour to hour,
- Feels upward to some height at last
- Of unimagined grace and power.
- Though yet the sacred fire be dull,
- In folds of thwarting matter furled,
- Ere death be nigh, while life is full,
- O Master Spirit of the world,
- Grant me to know, to seek, to find,
- In some small measure though it be,
- Emerging from the waste and blind,
- The clearer self, the grander me!
POEMS BY ARCHIBALD LAMPMAN
"The Clearer Self" is
reprinted from The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse.
Ed. Nicholson & Lee. Oxford: The Clarendon Press, 1917.