Visual Beauty

By George Sterling

Your futile clarion is at our ears,
  Calling we know not whither, and your eyes
  Hint of enchanted skies,
But not the abiding secret of our tears.

Your tragic lips use here an alien speech,
  That none may know nor any man forget,
  In whose wild tones are met
Accents that wound and silences that teach.

What word have you for man, O mystery?
  Is your mirage its own reward and goal,
  With which the lucid soul
Mingles at last, as rivers with the sea?

We know that you come to us from afar:
  The silver of the star is in your feet,
  That find a pathway sweet-
A rainbow road, but leading to no star.

The shadow of your beauty and its pain
  Is like the sorcery that music makes,
  And your sad smile awakes
A sense of wings come earthward-and in vain.

Dreams are your final gift, and, vision-drowned,
  We dream your face is given us for grail
  And all your hues a veil
To loveliness as yet unsought, unfound.

Ah! Finding such and all our dream's demand,
  Shall then the strange, immortal hunger cease?
  Draw near! Disclose the peace
That waits unfathomed in the Secret Land !

Bibliography Entry