A Precept

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A Precept  (1922) 
by Clark Ashton Smith
1922.

With words of ivory,
Of bronze, of ebony,.
Of alabaster, marble, steel and gold,
The beauty of the visible is told.

How, how with these express
The unseen Loveliness—
Splendor and light and harmony and sound
The heart has felt, the sense has never found ?

No shining words of stone—
Shadow and cloud alone—
These shall the poet seek eternally,
Whose lines would carve the mask of Mystery.

This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923.

The author died in 1961, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 50 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.