Through dark, athirst in soul and heart,
I roamed a desert in a daze
And where the pathways cross and part
I saw a six-winged Seraph blaze.
With moving Fingers soft as sleep
He brushed my eyes and they grew deep
Until they gaped with Prophecy
And saw as startled eagles see.
He brushed my ears wherein he poured
The noise of every thing that roared:
I heard the shudder of the sky,
The whir of angel hosts on high,
The stir of beasts below the sea
The vines that burgeoned round the Tree,
And, leaning to my lips, he wrung
From out of them my sinful tongue
Pitted with guile and perfidy;
And his Right Hand where blood was wet
Parted my palsied lips and set
A sapient Serpent’s sting in me,
And with a blade he slit my chest,
My quaking heart thereout he reft
And in the cleft within my breast
A coal alive with flame he left.
Then in the desert I was dead
Till God called unto me and said:
“Arise O Prophet! Hark to Me!
Go forth imbued with My desire
And take My Word by land and sea
To set the heart of Man afire.”