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An intense hope, nor let your gifts create
Scorn or neglect of ordinary means

Conducive to success-make destiny

Dispense with man's endeavour. Now, dare you search Your inmost heart, and candidly avow

Whether you have not rather wild desire

For this distinction, than security

Of its existence; whether you discern

The path to the fulfilment of your purpose

Clear as that purpose-and again, that purpose
Clear as your yearning to be singled out

For its pursuer. Dare you answer this?

Par. (After a pause.) No, I have nought to fear! Who

will may know

The secret'st workings of my soul. What though

It be so?-if indeed the strong desire

Eclipse the aim in me?-if splendour break

Upon the outset of my path alone,

And duskest shade succeed?

What fairer seal

Shall I require to my authentic mission

Than this fierce energy?-this instinct striving
Because its nature is to strive ?—enticed

By the security of no broad course,

With no success forever in its eyes !

How know I else such glorious fate my own,

But in the restless irresistible force

That works within me? Is it for human will
To institute such impulses ?-still less,

To disregard their promptings? What should I

Do, kept among you all; your loves, your cares,
Your life-all to be mine? Be sure that God
Ne'er dooms to waste the strength he deigns impart !
Ask the gier-eagle why she stoops at once
Into the vast and unexplored abyss,

What full-grown power informs her from the first,
Why she not marvels, strenuously beating

The silent boundless regions of the sky!

\Be sure they sleep not whom God needs! Nor fear
Their holding light his charge, when every hour
That finds that charge delayed, is a new death.
This for the faith in which I trust; and hence
I can abjure so well the idle arts

These pedants strive to learn and teach; Black Arts,
Great Works, the Secret and Sublime, forsooth-

Let others prize: too intimate a tie

Connects me with our God! A sullen fiend
To do my bidding, fallen and hateful sprites
To help me what are these, at best, beside
God helping, God directing everywhere,
So that the earth shall yield her secrets up,
And every object shall be charged to strike,
Teach, gratify, her master God appoints?
And I am young, my Festus, happy and free!
I can devote myself; I have a life

To give; I, singled out for this, the One!

Think, think; the wide east, where old Wisdom sprung; The bright south, where she dwelt; the hopeful north, All are passed o'er-it lights on me!

'Tis time

New hopes should animate the world, new light
Should dawn from new revealings to a race

Weighed down so long, forgotten so long; so shall
The heaven reserved for us, at last receive
Creatures whom no unwonted splendours blind,
But ardent to confront the unclouded blaze
Whose beams not seldom blessed their pilgrimage,
Not seldom glorified their life below.

Fest. My words have their old fate and make faint stand Against your glowing periods. Call this, truthWhy not pursue it in a fast retreat,

Some one of Learning's many palaces,

After approved example; seeking there
Calm converse with the great dead, soul to soul,
Who laid up treasure with the like intent?
-So lift yourself into their airy place,
And fill out full their unfulfilled careers,
Unravelling the knots their baffled skill
Pronounced inextricable, true!—but left
Far less confused? A fresh eye, a fresh hand,
Might do much at their vigour's waning-point;
Succeeding with new-breathed and earnest force,
As at old games a runner snatched the torch
From runner still this way success might be.
But you have coupled with your enterprise,
An arbitrary self-repugnant scheme
Of seeking it in strange and untried paths.
What books are in the desert? writes the sea

The secret of her yearning in vast caves

Where yours will fall the first of human feet?
Has Wisdom sate there and recorded aught
You press to read? Why turn aside from her
\To visit, where her vesture never glanced,
Now solitudes consigned to barrenness

By God's decree, which who shall dare impugn?
Now-ruins where she paused but would not stay,
Old ravaged cities that, renouncing her,
She called an endless curse on, so it came-
Or, worst of all, now-men you visit, men,
Ignoblest troops that never heard her voice,
Or hate it, men without one gift from Rome
Or Athens, these shall Aureole's teachers be!
Rejecting past example, practice, precept,
Aidless 'mid these he thinks to stand alone:
Thick like a glory round the Stagyrite

Your rivals throng, the sages: here stand you!
Whate'er you may protest, knowledge is not
Paramount in your love; or for her sake
You would collect all help from every source-
Rival or helper, friend, foe, all would merge

In the broad class of those who showed her haunts,
And those who showed them not.

What shall I say?
Festus, from childhood I have been possessed
By a fire-by a true fire, or faint or fierce,
As from without some master, so it seemed,
Repressed or urged its current: this but ill
Expresses what I would convey-but rather

I will believe an angel ruled me thus,

Than that my soul's own workings, own high nature,
So became manifest. I knew not then

What whispered in the evening, and spoke out
At midnight. If some mortal, born too soon,
Were laid away in some great trance-the ages
Coming and going all the while-till dawned
His true time's advent, and could then record
The words they spoke who kept watch by his bed,-
Then I might tell more of the breath so light
Upon my eyelids, and the fingers warm
Among my hair. Youth is confused; yet never
So dull was I but, when that spirit passed,
I turned to him, scarce consciously, as turns
A water-snake when fairies cross his sleep.
And having this within me and about me
While Einsiedeln, its mountains, lakes, and woods
Confined me--what oppressive joy was mine

When life grew plain, and I first viewed the thronged,
The ever-moving concourse of mankind!
Believe that ere I joined them-ere I knew
The purpose of the pageant, or the place
Consigned to me within its ranks-while yet
Wonder was freshest and delight most pure-
"Twas then that least supportable appeared
A station with the brightest of the crowd,
A portion with the proudest of them all!
And from the tumult in my breast, this only
Could I collect that I must thenceforth die,


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