Commentary

Disciples


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Sunday, April 3, 1892

     Great find tonight. The Columbus envelope spoken of in notes for March 16 does not contain old notes, but notes and one draft of

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a new poem, unpublished, dedicated to 1892. So far as I know the only recent formidable attempt since "Good-Bye" to write any.



A THOUGHT OF COLUMBUS

The mystery of mysteries, the crude and hurried ceaseless
         flame, spontaneous, bearing on itself.

The bubble and the huge, round, concrete orb!
A breath of Deity, as thence the bulging universe unfolding!
The many issuing cycles from their precedent minute!
The eras of the soul incepting in an hour,
Haply the widest, farthest evolutions of the world and man.

Thousands and thousands of miles hence, and now four
         centuries back,

A mortal impulse thrilling its brain cell,
Reck'd or unreck'd, the birth can no longer be postpon'd:
A phantom of the moment, mystic, stalking, sudden,
Only a silent thought, yet toppling down of more than walls of
         brass or stone.

(A flutter at the darkness' edge as if old Time's and Space's
         secret near revealing.)

A thought! a definite thought works out in shape.
Four hundred years roll on.
The rapid cumulus—trade, navigation, war, peace, democracy,
         roll on;

The restless armies and the fleets of time following their
         leader—the old camps of ages pitch'd in newer, larger areas,

The tangl'd, long-deferr'd eclaircissement of human life and
         hopes boldly begins untying,

As here to-day up-grows the Western World.

(An added word yet to my song, far Discoverer, as ne'er before
         sent back to son of earth—

If still thou hearest, hear me,
Voicing as now—lands, races, arts, bravas to thee,
O'er the long backward path to thee—one vast consensus,
         north, south, east, west,

Soul plaudits! acclamation! reverent echoes!
One manifold, huge memory to thee! oceans and lands!
The modern world to thee and thought of thee!)


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