I towered far, and lo! I stood within
The presence of the Lord Most High,
Sent thither by the sons of earth, to win
Some answer to their cry.
–“The Earth, say’st thou? The Human race?
By Me created? Sad its lot?
Nay: I have no remembrance of such place:
Such world I fashioned not.” –
–“O Lord, forgive me when I say
Thou spak’st the word, and mad’st it all.” –
“The Earth of men–let me bethink me . . . Yea!
I dimly do recall
“Some tiny sphere I built long back
(Mid millions of such shapes of mine)
So named . . . It perished, surely–not a wrack
Remaining, or a sign?
“It lost my interest from the first,
My aims therefor succeeding ill;
Haply it died of doing as it durst?” –
“Lord, it existeth still.” –
“Dark, then, its life! For not a cry
Of aught it bears do I now hear;
Of its own act the threads were snapt whereby
Its plaints had reached mine ear.
“It used to ask for gifts of good,
Till came its severance self-entailed,
When sudden silence on that side ensued,
And has till now prevailed.
“All other orbs have kept in touch;
Their voicings reach me speedily:
Thy people took upon them overmuch
In sundering them from me!
“And it is strange–though sad enough –
Earth’s race should think that one whose call
Frames, daily, shining spheres of flawless stuff
Must heed their tainted ball! . . .
“But say’st thou ’tis by pangs distraught,
And strife, and silent suffering? –
Deep grieved am I that injury should be wrought
Even on so poor a thing!
“Thou should’st have learnt that Not to Mend
For Me could mean but Not to Know:
Hence, Messengers! and straightway put an end
To what men undergo.” . . .
Homing at dawn, I thought to see
One of the Messengers standing by.
– Oh, childish thought! . . . Yet oft it comes to me
When trouble hovers nigh.