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Sri Aurobindo

Collected Poems

SABCL - Volume 5

I. Short Poems


Pururavus from converse held with Gods

On unseen crest2 of Nature high, occult,

Traversed the tumult of the flame-tossed seas

That cast their fire between the spirit’s poles.

Alone like a bright star twixt earth and heaven,

He reached the crossways of infinity.3

A Soul to our apparent life reborn

Out of the vastness of the original Self,

Journeying in dim momentous solitude

Led by the flickering of uncertain suns,

He essayed the fringe of Night’s tremendous home.

Before him lay the subtle realm of light

Our organed sense conceals, the light that gleams

Across the sealless musings of the seer,

A slumberless wide eye upon our scene.

Attracted4 to earth’s darkly pregnant dream

He tarried not on these mysterious shores

But still descended5 the divine abyss

To new adventure in the eternal Night,

Transgressed the wonder-line of things beyond

Abruptly into mortal space and time.

A universe appeared of difficult birth,

The labour of eclipsed and ignorant gods,

An immortality of chance and change.

Bridging the gulf between antagonist planes

He saw the circles of Heaven’s rash advance,

Sun upon sun, God’s sentinels in the void;

Life’s radiant and immeasurable camp

Blazed in the order of the aeonic Will.

But with the menace of the dragon depths

The old blind vigilant Nescience stretched afar

Hungering in serpent dumb infinitude,

And her dark shade besieged the luminaries.

Silence and Death opposed the invading Fire.

And even before he broke into our pale

There came on him a breath from tarnished worlds.

Averse from an obscure material touch

The images of the supernal realms6

That he had left sank from the front of thought

And held their session in the heart’s dumb cave.

The glory and grace, the light, the sacred life

Receded as behind a burning door:

Subliminal beneath the lid of mind

The grandeur and the passion and the calm.

His mind became a beat of memory.

Sight, hearing changed towards our diminished scale;

The little views grew great, the great grew small.

As yet some largeness was of inmost things

And he remembered in the formless sense

Proud kingdoms of intense and beautiful life

And love left free to do his absolute will

And dreams at once commuted into power.

Affronting many starfields of our space

And shortening ever the vast lens of Time

He met a smaller movement of desire

Prisoned in the orbit of a few pale globes

And knew in front our little solar belt

Hung casually among the giant stars.

Then7 earth received him mid her living forms.

Her deep inconscient motions packed and mute,

Her darknesses more wise than her small lights

Oppressed again his young divinity.


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: Pururavus


2 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: crests


3 eternity.


4 But destined


5 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: descending


6 fields; in 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: field


7 Our