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Sri Aurobindo

Collected Poems

SABCL - Volume 5

VI. Poems in New Metres

The Death of a God

 

Arise now, tread out the fire!

Scatter the ashes of a God through the stars.

Forget to hope and aspire.

Let us paint our prison, let us strengthen its bars.

Lo, now he is dead and the greatness that cumbered the world and Time’s ways

Has vanished like a golden shadow thrust out from the anguish of the ages;

The glory and burden, the sunlight and the passion have left our days;

Once more we can wear the grey livery of Death and gather in his wages.

All that drew back from his splendour, fleeing as ashamed from the light and the beauty and invincible sweetness

Now returns vaunting this1 darkness and littleness, this fret of life’s fever, its cruel and sad incompleteness.

All that is false and wry and little are freed to follow their nature once more2.

Close time’s brilliant pages!

Give back to life3 the old tables; its dull ease, its bowed greyness restore.

 

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.
  — 1st version
  — 2nd version

1 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: their

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2 There are two version of this poem in the edition of 2009 year. These last three lines were inclided only into the second version and are absent in the first version. Here is the second version in full lenght:

Arise, tread out the fire,

Scatter the ashes of a god through the stars!

Forget to hope and aspire.

He is dead and his greatness that cumbered the world has vanished like a golden shadow from the ages.

The whip of glory, the splendid burden behind us are cast,

Earth is free from fire and stress, left to the joy of her smallness, rid of his mighty spirit at last.

All that is false and wry and little are freed to follow their nature once more.

Close timeís brilliant pages!

Give back to manís life the old tables, its dull ease, its bowed greyness restore.

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3 2009 ed. CWSA, vol.2: manís life

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