Thursday, June 2, 2011

Mysterious Night - Joseph Blanco White

Mysterious Night! when our first parent knew
  Thee, from report divine, and heard thy name,
  Did he not tremble for this lovely Frame,
  This glorious canopy of Light and Blue?
Yet 'neath a curtain of translucent dew,
  Bathed in the rays of the great setting Flame,
  Hesperus with the host of heaven came,
  And lo! Creation widened in man's view.
Who could have thought such Darkness lay concealed
  Within thy beams, O Sun! or who could find,
  Whilst fly, and leaf, and insect stood revealed,
  That to such countless Orbs thou mad'st us blind!
Why do we then shun death with anxious strife?
  If Light can thus deceive, wherefore not Life?

Written in 1827
Joseph Blanco White - Wikipedia. He was a theologian and poet. This is perhaps his most famous poem dedicated to Samuel Taylor Coleridge.

Sonnet structure abba abba cdcd ee - Hesperus, the evening star ... a clear divison of thought after the first two stanzas.

We consider the world to be defined by day rather than night, yet night is perhaps more interesting to some than day. I thought it an interesting concept to see the sun as a force that blinds as much as a force that shows. If the sun declares such minute detail as leaf and fly does it also hide the same. 

If day, through the work of the sun, can hide such an interesting world perhaps life can also blind us to another world. How much do we know of death that is revealed by what life gives us? As our own 'Hesperus' rises do we start to see more of this world?

Do we look to the mysteries of the heavens as much as in the past? Has science removed some of the layers? ... or increased are interest?

I think the heavens will always have poetic interest and symbolism ... and a great mystery always above our understanding.

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