Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, URIEL, by CORINNE ROOSEVELT ROBINSON



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URIEL, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Then uriel spake -- the great angel, the angel of god
Last Line: "for the ways of jehovah are wondrous. Wait, mortal, and see!"
Subject(s): Uriel


Then Uriel spake -- the great angel, the angel of God --
"Would ye know then the secrets of Yahveh, the rule of his rod?
So, weigh me the weight of the fire, the blast of the wind
That has left in the wake of the tempest no whisper behind;
Or call me the day that has vanished -- one hour of the day --
And I will interpret Jehovah, his will and his way!"

And I answered, "Oh! angel of Yahveh, ye know and I know
That the questions ye ask are a riddle. The gleam and the glow
Of the flash of the fire are fitful, and cannot be weighed,
And the whirl of the cyclone unmeasured can never be stayed,
And the day that is past -- could we call it -- then Heaven would be here,
But, perchance, we could walk, even blindly, were the pathway more clear!"

Then Uriel answered, "I ask ye of things ye have known.
Ye have sat at the warmth of the fire; the breeze that has blown
Has cooled ye when faint with the summer's long sweep of the sun,
And the day that is past, ye have lived it, although it is done.
If ye cannot discern, though half hidden, the things ye have seen,
Would ye look on the veiled face of Yahveh, his might and his mien?"

And I answered God's angel in sorrow, "'Twere better by far
That we ne'er had been born to the bitter, blind things that we are;
To suffer, and not to know wherefore, to be but the sport
Of Jehovah who reads not the riddle of all he has wrought!"

Then, gently, the angel of Yahveh made answer to me --
"When the flame of the fire has flickered, oh! what do ye see,
The smoke that is left? Yea, the ashes, but fire and flame
Are greater than smoke or than ashes. The clouds are the same --
They pass to the earth in the shower, the drops shall remain,
But greater than drops, and unending the rush of the rain.
What has been is but drops and but ashes to the more still to be,
For the ways of Jehovah are wondrous. Wait, mortal, and see!"





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