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Poem by Thomas Hardy

The Aërolite

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
Earths 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.

Thomas Hardy

Thomas Hardy's other poems:
  1. The Supplanter
  2. Song from Heine
  3. In the Vaulted Way
  4. To an Impersonator of Rosalind
  5. The Place on the Map

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