Verse > Anthologies > The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse > 238. The Voice of the Soul
Nicholson & Lee, eds.  The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse. 1917.
238. The Voice of the Soul
By Victor James Daley  (1858–1905)
IN Youth, when through our veins runs fast
  The bright red stream of life,
The Soul’s Voice is a trumpet-blast
  That calls us to the strife.
The Spirit spurns its prison-bars,        5
  And feels with force endued
To scale the ramparts of the stars
  And storm Infinitude.
Youth passes; like a dungeon grows
  The Spirit’s house of clay:       10
The voice that once in music rose
  In murmurs dies away.
But in the day when sickness sore
  Smites on the body’s walls,
The Soul’s Voice through the breach once more       15
  Like to a trumpet calls.
Well shall it be with him who heeds
  The mystic summons then!
His after-life with loving deeds
  Shall blossom amongst men.       20
He shall have gifts—the gift that feels
  The germ within the clod,
And hears the whirring of the wheels
  That turn the mills of God!
The gift that sees with glance profound       25
  The secret soul of things,
And in the silence hears the sound
  Of vast and viewless wings!
The veil of Isis sevenfold
  To him as gauze shall be,       30
Wherethrough, clear-eyed, he shall behold
  The Ancient Mystery.
He shall do battle for the True,
  Defend till death the Right,
With Shoes of Swiftness Wrong pursue,       35
  With Sword of Sharpness smite.
And, dying, he shall haply hear,
  Like golden trumpets blown
For joy, far voices sweet and clear—
  Soul-voices like his own.       40



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