Archibald MacLeish

(7 May 1892 – 20 April 1982 / Glencoe, Illinois)

Dr. Sigmund Freud Discovers the Sea Shell Poem by Archibald MacLeish


Science, that simple saint, cannot be bothered
Figuring what anything is for:
Enough for her devotions that things are
And can be contemplated soon as gathered.

She knows how every living thing was fathered,
She calculates the climate of each star,
She counts the fish at sea, but cannot care
Why any one of them exists, fish, fire or feathered.

Why should she? Her religion is to tell
By rote her rosary of perfect answers.
Metaphysics she can leave to man:
She never wakes at night in heaven or hell

Staring at darkness. In her holy cell
There is no darkness ever: the pure candle
Burns, the beads drop briskly from her hand.

Who dares to offer Her the curled sea shell!
She will not touch it!--knows the world she sees
Is all the world there is! Her faith is perfect!

And still he offers the sea shell . . .

What surf
Of what far sea upon what unknown ground
Troubles forever with that asking sound?
What surge is this whose question never ceases?

Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003

Do you like this poem?
1 person liked.
1 person did not like.

Form:


Read poems about / on: fish, sea, faith, star, fire, heaven, world, night, fishing

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (Dr. Sigmund Freud Discovers the Sea Shell by Archibald MacLeish )

Read all 1 comments »

Famous Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  3. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  4. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. Caged Bird
    Maya Angelou
  8. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  9. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  10. A Dream Within A Dream
    Edgar Allan Poe
Trending Poets
Trending Poems
  1. "Why do I love" You, Sir?, Emily Dickinson
  2. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  3. If, Rudyard Kipling
  4. Dreams, Langston Hughes
  5. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  6. Caged Bird, Maya Angelou
  7. Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
  8. If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
  9. Fire and Ice, Robert Frost
  10. Daffodils, William Wordsworth
[Hata Bildir]