Roy Campbell

(2 October 1901 / Durban, South Africa)

We are Like Worlds, by Roy Campbell


We bear to future times the secret news
That first was whispered to the new-made earth:
We are like worlds with nations in our thews,
Shaped for delight, and primed for endless birth.
We never kiss but vaster shapes possess
Our bodies: towering up into the skies,
We wear the night and thunder for our dress,
While, vaster than imagination, rise
Two giant forms, like cobras flexed to sting,
Bending their spines in one tremendous ring
With all the starlight burning through their eyes,
Fire in their loins, and on their lips the hiss
Of breath indrawn above some steep abyss.
When, like the sun, our heavenly desire
Has turned this flesh into a cloud of fire
Through which our nerves their strenuous lightning fork
Eternity has blossomed in an hour
And as we gaze upon that wondrous flower
We thin the world a beetle on its stalk.

Submitted: Wednesday, January 09, 2008
Edited: Tuesday, July 17, 2012

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