Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, LIMBO, by SAMUEL TAYLOR COLERIDGE

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LIMBO, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Tis a strange place, this limbo! - not a place
Last Line: A fear -- a future state; -- 'tis positive negation!
Subject(s): Hades

'Tis a strange place, this Limbo! -- not a Place,
Yet name it so; -- where Time and weary Space
Fettered from flight, with night-mare sense of fleeing,
Strive for their last crepuscular half-being; --
Lank Space, and scytheless Time with branny hands
Barren and soundless as the measuring sands,
Not mark'd by flit of Shades, -- unmeaning they
As moonlight on the dial of the day!
But that is lovely -- looks like human Time, --
An old man with a steady look sublime,
That stops his earthly task to watch the skies;
But he is blind -- a statue hath such eyes; --
Yet having moonward turn'd his face by chance,
Gazes the orb with moon-like countenance,
With scant white hairs, with foretop bald and high,
He gazes still, -- his eyeless face all eye; --
As 'twere an organ full of silent sight,
His whole face seemeth to rejoice in light! --
Lip touching lip, all moveless, bust and limb --
He seems to gaze at that which seems to gaze on him!
No such sweet sights doth Limbo den immure,
Wall'd round, and made a spirit-jail secure,
By the mere horror of blank Naught-at-all,
Whose circumambience doth these ghosts enthral.
A lurid thought is growthless, dull Privation,
Yet that is but a Purgatory curse;
Hell knows a fear far worse,
A fear -- a future state; -- 'tis positive Negation!

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