Barbaric Black and Burning Gold

Deep with divine tautology,
The sunset’s mighty mystery
Again has traced the scroll-like west
With hieroglyphs of burning gold:
Forever new, forever old,
Its miracle is manifest.

Time lays the scroll away. And now
Above the hills a giant brow
Of cloud Night lifts; and from his arm,
Barbaric black, upon the world,
With thunder, wind and fire, is hurled
His awful argument of storm.

What part, O man, is yours in such?
Whose awe and wonder are in touch
With Nature,–speaking rapture to
Your soul,–yet leaving in your reach
No human word of thought or speech
Commensurate with the thing you view.

– “Sunset and Storm” by Madison Julius Cawein

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© 2012 Loren Zemlicka
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