Verse > Anthologies > The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse > 212. I am the Reaper
Nicholson & Lee, eds.  The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse. 1917.
212. I am the Reaper
By William Ernest Henley  (1849–1903)
I AM the Reaper.
  All things with heedful hook
Silent I gather.
Pale roses touched with the spring,
Tall corn in summer,        5
Fruits rich with autumn, and frail winter blossoms—
Reaping, still reaping—
All things with heedful hook
Timely I gather.
I am the Sower.       10
All the unbodied life
Runs through my seed-sheet.
Atom with atom wed,
Each quickening the other,
Fall through my hands, ever changing, still changeless.       15
Ceaselessly sowing,
Life, incorruptible life,
Flows from my seed-sheet.
Maker and breaker,
I am the ebb and the flood,       20
Here and Hereafter,
Sped through the tangle and coil
Of infinite nature,
Viewless and soundless I fashion all being.
Taker and giver,       25
I am the womb and the grave,
The Now and the Ever.



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