The Secret Key and Other Verses

The Spirit of Poetry

George Essex Evans

ALL things are Hers. Concealed or manifest,
    Found or unfound, Her Spirit lives in each—
Dumb till the Master-Soul its secret guessed
                And gave its silence speech.

All things are Hers. She is the Crystal Queen
    Of all men’s vision, and the moving breath
Which through the greyness of the sordid scene
                Gloweth and quickeneth.

She is the flower-maid of the dreaming noon,
    The goddess of the temple of the night;
Where the berg-turrets gleam beneath the moon
                She builds Her throne of white.

She knows the Battle-Hymn of mighty wars
    When wind and ocean thunder on the strand.
She knows the song the lonely river-bars
                Sing to the listening land.

Armoured and helmeted and spurred for fight
    She fires men’s hearts to right the bitter wrong;
Yet sits She weaving of a summer night
                Flowers of a bridal song.

She gives the temper that has made men great
    And fashioned heroes out of common clay,
And welded firm into a mighty State
                The tribes of yesterday.

Youth’s radiant vision, and the dreamy dawn
    Of the soft lovelight in a maiden’s eyes,
And holiest joys of motherhood, are drawn
                By Her from Paradise.

She knows the Wheel-Song of the Stars that run
    Their glittering courses through the blue abyss.
Ere the round earth fell flaming from the sun
                Her spirit was, and is.

She is the Phoeix, ever making true
    The dim tradition of the misty morn.
The crucible of science gives anew
                Her fairy form re-born.

All things are Hers—but not with equal word
    Dowers She the pilgrims of the sacred shrine.
Only the Great Interpreters have heard
                Her melodies divine.

All things are Hers, and so to Her I bring
    Songs of the dreams that haunt me on my way—
I who scarce hear the rustle of Her wing
                Borne on the wind away!

The Secret Key and Other Verses - Contents

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