Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, NOTUS IGNOTO, by BAYARD TAYLOR

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

NOTUS IGNOTO, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Do you sigh for the power you dream of
Last Line: Are ever revealed!
Alternate Author Name(s): Taylor, James Bayard
Subject(s): Dreams; Life; Pride; Truth; Nightmares; Self-esteem; Self-respect


Do you sigh for the power you dream of,
The fair, evasive secret,
The rare imagined passion,
O Friend unknown!
Do you haunt Egyptian portals,
Where, within, the laboring goddess
Yields to the hands of her chosen
The sacred child, alone?


Ah, pause! There is consolation
For you, and pride:
Free of choice and worship,
Spared the pang and effort,
Nor partial made by triumph,
The poet's limitations
You lightly set aside:
Revived, in your fresher spirit
The buds of my thought may blossom
And the clew, from weary fingers
Fallen, become your guide!
The taker, even as the giver,
The user as the maker,
Soil as seed, and rain as sunshine,
Alike are glorified!


Loss with gain is balanced;
You may reach, when I but beckon;
You may drink, though mine the vin tage,
You complete what I begun.
When at the temple-door I falter,
You advance to the altar;
I but rise to the daybreak,
You to the sun!
My goal is your beginning:
My steeps of aspiration
For you are won!


Hark! the nightingale is chanting
As if her mate but knew;
Yet the dream within me
Which the bird-voice wakens,
Takes from her unconscious
Prompting, form and hue:
So the song I sing you,
Voice alone of my being,
Song for the mate and the nestling,
Finer and sweeter meaning
May possess for you!
Lifting to starry summits,
Filling with infinite passion,
While the witless singer broodeth
In the darkness and the dew!


Carved on the rock as an arrow
To point your path, am I:
A cloud that tells, in the heavens,
Which way the breezes fly:
A brook that is born in the meadows,
And wanders at will, nor guesses
Whither its waters hie:
A child that scatters blossoms,
Thoughtless of memoried odors,
Or sweet surprises of color,
That waken when you go by:
A bee-bird of the woodland,
That finds the honeyed hollows
Of ancient oaks, for others, --
Even as these, am I!


Accept, and enjoy, and follow, --
Conquer wherein I yield!
Make yours the bright conclusion,
From me concealed!
Truth, to whom will possess it,
Beauty to whom embraces,
Song and its inmost secret,
Life and its unheard music,
To whom will hear and know them,
Are ever revealed!

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