1My soul, in
strugglingstraggling thou dost ill.
2The chicken in the shell lies
3So doth the embryon in the womb;
4So doth the
corpse within the tomb;
5So doth the flower sleep in its
6Obedient all to Nature’s laws.
7But thou’rt still striving to be free,
8As if none were in bonds but thee.
9Though for a time thou’rt
clothed with earth,
10Ere long thou’lt have a happy birth.
11The chirping bird will break its shell;
12The infant leave its loathèd cell;
13The sleeping dust will rise and speak,
14And will her
marble prison break;
15The flower her beauty will display—
ThenAnd my enfranchised soul, away
17Beyond the sky, will take her flight,
18And rest above the spheres of night
19In everlasting life and
dunghill globe of Earth,
21She’ll go from whence she had her birth.
22But (O my soul!)
once more return,
23And call me in my silent urn.
24But if asleep I then am found,
Jog me, and say the trump doth sound;
26Then will I rise and fly away
27With thee, to everlasting day.
28Then shall our grief and past annoys
Be swallowed up of infinite joys:
30Then being perfect and sublimed,
31We shall discern this globe
32Then shall we know these orbs of wonder,
a mazeamaze we now live under;
sad Saturn’s heavy eye
35Frowns on me with malignancy;
36And why conjunctions should foreshow
monarchies’monarchy’s, monarchies overthrow;
38And by what (swift and infinite) power
Sol runs three hundred miles an hour;
40And why pale Cynthia doth so change
41Her lovely face as she doth range
All night, a-hunting in the shade;
43And how fair
Venus can be made
44Hesperus in the orient,
45And Vesperus in the occident;
ethereal fire doth burn;
47Or that this terrene globe doth turn,
48The sun being center unto all—
49And that he ne’er doth rise or fall—
Or whether they have a treble motion,
51Of which we have so small a notion.
52All this (and more) we then shall know,
53Which are such wonders here below.
54But which will most increase our joys
55(Compared with which, these will prove
56Our unknown friends we then shall know,
57Even those (ay me!) we lost below.
58Nay, we shall know (without which all is none)
The eternal essence, even as we are known.