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Poem by Thomas Hardy
I thought a germ of Consciousness Escaped on an aërolite Aions ago From some far globe, where no distress Had means to mar supreme delight; But only things abode that made The power to feel a gift uncloyed Of gladsome glow, And life unendingly displayed Emotions loved, desired, enjoyed. And that this stray, exotic germ Fell wanderingly upon our sphere, After its wingings, Quickened, and showed to us the worm That gnaws vitalities native here, And operated to unblind Earth’s old-established ignorance Of stains and stingings, Which grin no griefs while not opined, But cruelly tax intelligence. ‘How shall we,’ then the seers said, ‘Oust this awareness, this disease Called sense, here sown, Though good, no doubt, where it was bred, And wherein all things work to please?’ Others cried: ‘Nay, we rather would, Since this untoward gift is sent For ends unknown, Limit its registerings to good, And hide from it all anguishment.’ I left them pondering. This was how (Or so I dreamed) was waked on earth The mortal moan Begot of sentience. Maybe now Normal unwareness waits rebirth.
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