The Yellow Book/Volume 7/A Sonnet

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Sic tu recoli merearis!

By A. C. Benson

O soul, my soul, before thou com’st to die,
Set one deep mark upon the face of time,
Let one absorbing laughter, one grave rhyme
Ring in the heedless wind that hurries by.

Yon smooth—limbed beech, that hangs upon the slope
With branching spray, with firm and shapely arm,
Hath, could'st thou write it, a bewildering charm
Would gild thy name beyond thy utmost hope!

O soul, my soul, be true, laborious, just,——
And some chance word, some penetrating smile,
Flashed with no purpose, no impulsive aim,
Shall live, and breed strong thoughts, when thou art dust;
And mount, and gather strength, and roll in flame
Beyond the utmost Orient’s utmost isle!