The Ancient Quest

Clark Ashton Smith

O giant stars, born of eternal light,
O winged flames wherewith the void is sown,
As dreadful prophets of a God unknown,
Ye speak the law in light!

Had we but sight to see and comprehend,
Your countless fires were as a language plain
To tell us all that we have sought in vain;
The quest were at an end.

O younger worlds, whose tireless-pinioned flight
Climbs eagerly the sheer and topless deep!
O shrivelled planets that obscurely creep
On orbits sunk in night!

Alike ye falter in unceasing gloom
That shrouds the deathless Truth ye may not find;
Alike for ye the flaming suns are blind,
And light may not illume.

For Life whose God-ambitious eyes would see
The stallar-manifested truth sublime,
Must gaze with sight immutable as Time,
Large as Infinity.

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