Ascending in a radiant tide,
In purest particles alone
Soaring to attain th' Almighty throne—
Impelled by power which tempers all,
Such is our doom—we rise or fall.
Yet are there hours (who has not known?)
When, of our rigid task abhorrent,
We fain would, like the sullen torrent,
Court the abyss before us thrown,
Rather than, on the wings of faith—
Our sordid part resigned to Death
As the mist-wreath to flee from earth
Freed from the taint that dimmed our birth.
And why? but that the past still flings
Its gloom o'er all the future brings:
Hope meted by our pleasures past
Deserves not that her shrine should last:
Fruition follows not her bloom:
Pining expectance droops her plume:
Whatever our pursuit, the part
Achieved sates not the longing heart
Restless, immortal, destined here to roam
Striving 'mid finite things to build itself a home.