The Poetry Corner


By Aldous Leonard Huxley

Books and a coloured skein of thoughts were mine; And magic words lay ripening in my soul Till their much-whispered music turned a wine Whose subtlest power was all in my control. These things were mine, and they were real for me As lips and darling eyes and a warm breast: For I could love a phrase, a melody, Like a fair woman, worshipped and possessed. I scorned all fire that outward of the eyes Could kindle passion; scorned, yet was afraid; Feared, and yet envied those more deeply wise Who saw the bright earth beckon and obeyed. But a time came when, turning full of hate And weariness from my remembered themes, I wished my poet's pipe could modulate Beauty more palpable than words and dreams. All loveliness with which an act informs The dim uncertain chaos of desire Is mine to-day; it touches me, it warms Body and spirit with its outward fire. I am mine no more: I have become a part Of that great earth that draws a breath and stirs To meet the spring. But I could wish my heart Were still a winter of frosty gossamers.