Verse > Anthologies > The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse > 334. A Ballade of the Centre
Nicholson & Lee, eds.  The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse. 1917.
334. A Ballade of the Centre
By Anonymous
WHEN all the shores of knowledge fade
  Beyond the realms of night and day,
When the quick stir of thought is stayed
  And, as a dream of yesterday,
  The bonds of striving fall away:        5
There dawns sometimes a point of fire
  Burning the utter dark, that may
Fulfil our desperate desire.
Into the darkness, unafraid,
  Wherein soft hands of silence lay       10
Their veil of peace upon the blade
  Of too bright thought, we take our way.
  In changing of desire we pay
Whatever price the gods require,
  Knowing the end is theirs—and they       15
Fulfil our desperate desire.
Upon the stillness we have made
  Between our working and our play
A deeper stillness yet is laid.
  Like some white bird above the sway       20
  Of summer waves within the bay
Peace lights upon us ere we tire,
  And does (yet how, we cannot say)
Fulfil our desperate desire.

God of the world, to Whom we pray,
  Thou Inmost God to Whom aspire
All hopes that Thou wilt not betray—
  Fulfil our desperate desire!



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