japonisme: brimful of starlight

17 October 2007

brimful of starlight

THE INDIAN UPON GOD

I PASSED along the water's edge below the humid trees,
My spirit rocked in evening light,
the rushes round my knees,


My spirit rocked in sleep and sighs;
and saw the moorfowl pace
All dripping on a grassy slope,
and saw them cease to chase
Each other round in circles,
and heard the eldest speak:
Who holds the world between His bill
and made us strong or weak
Is an undying moorfowl,
and He lives beyond the sky.
The rains are from His dripping wing,
the moonbeams from His eye.

I passed a little further on and heard a lotus talk:
Who made the world and ruleth it,
He hangeth on a stalk,

For I am in His image made,
and all this tinkling tide

Is but a sliding drop of rain
between His petals wide.


A little way within the gloom
a roebuck raised his eyes
Brimful of starlight, and he said: The Stamper of the Skies,
He is a gentle roebuck;
for how else, I pray, could He
Conceive a thing so sad and soft, a gentle thing like me?

I passed a little further on
and heard a peacock say:

Who made the grass and made the worms and made my feathers gay,
He is a monstrous peacock, and He waveth all the night
His languid tail above us, lit with myriad spots of light.

William Butler Yeats


(Yeats never fully embraced his Protestant past nor joined the majority of Ireland’s Roman Catholics but he devoted much of his life to study in myriad other subjects including theosophy, mysticism, spiritualism, and the Kabbalah.)

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4 Comments:

Blogger Princess Haiku said...

That is very interesting. You must be reading a biography of him.

18 October, 2007 08:59  
Blogger lotusgreen said...

no, i'm not. but that poem made me feel drunken, and i needed to look that up. it is interesting, isn't it

18 October, 2007 20:48  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love this blog!

09 December, 2008 02:24  
Blogger lotusgreen said...

thanks! :^)

09 December, 2008 08:20  

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hi, and thanks so much for stopping by. i spend all too much time thinking my own thoughts about this stuff, so please tell me yours. i thrive on the exchange!

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