Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, MEN OF GENIUS, by MATTHEW ARNOLD



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MEN OF GENIUS, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Silent, the lord of the world
Last Line: Back to his master again.
Subject(s): God; War


SILENT, the Lord of the world
Eyes from the heavenly height,
Girt by his far-shining train,
Us, who with banners unfurl'd
Fight life's many-chanc'd fight
Madly below, in the plain.

Then saith the Lord to his own:--
'See ye the battle below?
Turmoil of death and of birth!
Too long let we them groan.
Haste, arise ye, and go;
Carry my peace upon earth.'

Gladly they rise at his call;
Gladly they take his command;
Gladly descend to the plain.
Alas! How few of them all--
Those willing servants--shall stand
In their Master's presence again!

Some in the tumult are lost:
Baffled, bewilder'd, they stray.
Some as prisoners draw breath.
Others--the bravest--are cross'd,
On the height of their bold-follow'd way,
By the swift-rushing missile of Death.

Hardly, hardly shall one
Come, with countenance bright,
O'er the cloud-wrapt, perilous plain:
His Master's errand well done,
Safe through the smoke of the fight,
Back to his Master again.





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