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Sri Aurobindo

Collected Poems

SABCL - Volume 5

I. Short Poems


Majestic, mild, immortally august,1

In2 silence throned, to just and to unjust

One Lord of deep3 unutterable love,

I saw Him, Shiva, like a brooding dove

Close-winged upon her nest. The outcaste4 came,

The sinners gathered round5 that tender6 Flame,

The demons, by the other sterner gods

Rejected from their luminous abodes,

Gathered around the Refuge of the lost,

Soft-smiling on that wild and grisly host.

All who were refugeless, wretched, unloved,

The wicked and the good together moved

Naturally to Him, the asylum7 sweet,

And found their heaven at their Master’s feet.

The vision changed and in His8 place there stood

A Terror red as lightning or as blood;

His fierce9 right hand a javelin advanced

And, as He shook it, earthquake reeling10 danced

Across the hemisphere, ruin and plague

Rained out of heaven, disasters swift and vague

Threatened11, a marching multitude of ills.

His foot strode forward to oppress the hills,

And at the vision of His burning eyes

The hearts of men grew faint with dread surmise

Of sin and punishment; their cry was loud,

“O Master of the stormwind and the cloud,

Spare, Rudra, spare. Show us that other form

Auspicious, not incarnate wrath and storm.”

The God of Wrath12, the God of Love are one,

Nor13 least He loves when14 most He smites. Alone

Who rises15 above fear and plays with grief,

Defeat and death, inherits full relief

From blindness and beholds the single Form,

Love masking Terror, Peace supporting storm.

The Friend of Man helps him with Life and Death,

Until he knows. Then freed from mortal breath

He feels the joy of the immortal play16;

Grief, pain, resentment, terror pass away.

He too grows Rudra fierce, august and dire,

And Shiva, sweet fulfiller of desire.


Later edition of this work: The Complete Works of Sri Aurobindo.- Set in 37 volumes.- Volume 2.- Collected Poems.- Pondicherry: Sri Aurobindo Ashram, 2009.- 751 p.

1 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: Immortal, moveless, calm, alone, august,


2 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: A


3 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: still


4 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: outcasts


5 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: to


6 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: quiet


7 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: shelterer


8 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: its


9 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: strong


10 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: stumbling


11 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: Neighboured


12 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: Force


13 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: Not


14 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: whom


15 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: towers


16 Last part of the poem in 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2:

Grief, pain, resentment, terror pass away.

He feels the joy of the immortal play;

He has the silence and the unflinching force,

He knows the oneness and the eternal course.

He too is Rudra and thunder and the Fire,

He Shiva and the white Light no shadows tire,

The Strength that rides abroad on Time’s wide wings,

The Calm in the heart of all immortal things.