Henry David Thoreau

Concord, Massachusetts
Henry David Thoreau
Concord, Massachusetts

Inspiration

Rating: 3.3
Whate'er we leave to God, God does,
And blesses us;
The work we choose should be our own,
God leaves alone.

If with light head erect I sing,
Though all the Muses lend their force,
From my poor love of anything,
The verse is weak and shallow as its source.

But if with bended neck I grope
Listening behind me for my wit,
With faith superior to hope,
More anxious to keep back than forward it;

Making my soul accomplice there
Unto the flame my heart hath lit,
Then will the verse forever wear--
Time cannot bend the line which God hath writ.

Always the general show of things
Floats in review before my mind,
And such true love and reverence brings,
That sometimes I forget that I am blind.

But now there comes unsought, unseen,
Some clear divine electuary,
And I, who had but sensual been,
Grow sensible, and as God is, am wary.

I hearing get, who had but ears,
And sight, who had but eyes before,
I moments live, who lived but years,
And truth discern, who knew but learning's lore.

I hear beyond the range of sound,
I see beyond the range of sight,
New earths and skies and seas around,
And in my day the sun doth pale his light.

A clear and ancient harmony
Pierces my soul through all its din,
As through its utmost melody--
Farther behind than they, farther within.

More swift its bolt than lightning is,
Its voice than thunder is more loud,
It doth expand my privacies
To all, and leave me single in the crowd.

It speaks with such authority,
With so serene and lofty tone,
That idle Time runs gadding by,
And leaves me with Eternity alone.

Now chiefly is my natal hour,
And only now my prime of life;
Of manhood's strength it is the flower,
'Tis peace's end and war's beginning strife.

It comes in summer's broadest noon,
By a grey wall or some chance place,
Unseasoning Time, insulting June,
And vexing day with its presuming face.

Such fragrance round my couch it makes,
More rich than are Arabian drugs,
That my soul scents its life and wakes
The body up beneath its perfumed rugs.

Such is the Muse, the heavenly maid,
The star that guides our mortal course,
Which shows where life's true kernel's laid,
Its wheat's fine flour, and its undying force.

She with one breath attunes the spheres,
And also my poor human heart,
With one impulse propels the years
Around, and gives my throbbing pulse its start.

I will not doubt for evermore,
Nor falter from a steadfast faith,
For thought the system be turned o'er,
God takes not back the word which once He saith.

I will not doubt the love untold
Which not my worth nor want has bought,
Which wooed me young, and woos me old,
And to this evening hath me brought.

My memory I'll educate
To know the one historic truth,
Remembering to the latest date
The only true and sole immortal youth.

Be but thy inspiration given,
No matter through what danger sought,
I'll fathom hell or climb to heaven,
And yet esteem that cheap which love has bought.
___________________

Fame cannot tempt the bard
Who's famous with his God,
Nor laurel him reward
Who has his Maker's nod.
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COMMENTS
Faker 26 November 2020
I HATE ACADEMIC RESEARCH AND THIS GUY PLEASE STOP MAKING MY LIFE HARDER THAN IT ALREADY IS
0 0 Reply
Ratnakar Mandlik 07 May 2017
Fame cannot tempt the bard Who is famous with his God. Nor laurel him reward who has his master's nod. Great and superb, imagery as also the faith in Him and His majesty.
2 1 Reply
Kuda Bondamakara 07 May 2017
a poem that inspres us
1 1 Reply
An inspiring poem! Love and faith is the most fundamental aspect of spirituality. To recognise God's love and bask in the glory of His love is truly divine. Enjoyed reading Thoreau's great poem on Inspiration. To quote: I will not doubt the love untold Which not my worth nor want has bought, Which wooed me young, and woos me old, And to this evening hath me brought.
1 1 Reply
Glen Kappy 07 May 2017
i didn't know this poem before and am glad to be introduced to it. and though i'm a fan of brevity, i read it through. (and noticed in the fifth stanza from the bottom it looks like the word should be though not thought.) i'm glad to see thoreau's recognition that all good and perfect gifts (in this case, inspired words) come from above, the Father of lights... similar in respects thematically to this poem are my by or through and e.e. cummings sonnet that begins i thank you God for most this amazing day. whether we recognize it or not, and whether we call it the muse or another name, God is the source of the best that comes through us, yes? -gk
0 0 Reply
Tony Hoss 07 May 2017
the words just flow amazing...
0 0 Reply
Edward Kofi Louis 07 May 2017
Its presuming face! ! Thanks for sharing this poem with us.
0 0 Reply
I see beyond the reach of sight.... thanks for posting.....
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Clarence Prince 07 July 2016
I will not doubt for evermore Nor falter from a steadfast faith Well said, Henry, stand firm!
1 1 Reply
Rajnish Manga 27 December 2014
One of my favorite classical poets since my childhood. It is always a great pleasure to read poems. This is extra-ordinary one, full of righteousness.
1 1 Reply

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