written by John Masefield
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A calm like Jove’s beneath a fiery air.
His hands most beautiful and full of force,
Able to kill the wolf and tame the horse
Or carve the granite into angels' hair.
His brow most noble over eyes that bum
At thought of truth or knowledge wanting aid.
His mind a very sword to make afraid,
A very fire to beacon at the turn.
His step swift as a panther's, his wih fierce
To be about the beauty of some deed,
Since beauty's being is his sf>iht's food.
His voice caressing where it does not pierce;
His wratli like lightning: he is King: indeed
He is much more, a King with gratitude.
* * * * *
A lean man, silent, behind triple bars
Of pride, fastidiousness and secret life.
His thought an austere commune with the stars,
His speech a probing with a surgeon’s knife.
His style a chastity whose acid burns
All slack false formlessness in man or thing;
His face a record of the truth man learns
Fighting bare-knuckled Nature in the ring.
His self (unseen until a danger breaks)
Serves as a man, but when the peril comes
And weak souls turn to water, his awakes
Like bright salvation among martyrdoms.
Then, with the danger mastered, once again
He goes behind his doors and draws the chain.
|Works by this author are in the public domain in countries where the copyright term is the author's life plus 51 years or less.|