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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.
The Library of the World’s Best Literature. An Anthology in Thirty Volumes. 1917.

Author Unknown

Ancient Gueber Hymn

WHERE goest thou, keen soul of heat,

So bright, so light, so fleet;

Whose wing was never downward bent,

Aye pluming for ascent?

Where goest thou, when, breaking loose

From all mechanic use,

From beacon-head and altar-stone

And hearth of mortal flown,

Thou spreadest through the air apace,

Dissolving in wide space?

Continually the waters fall;

Springs, torrents, rivers,—all,

Drawn downward to the gathering deep,

Remain within its keep.

But thou to the empyrean sea,

Bright upward stream, dost flee,

Where stars and sun are lost to sight,

Drowned in exceeding light!

Continually, in strength and pride,

The great ships cut the tide;

The waters fall, and these descend

Unto their journey’s end.

But who, upborne on wing of thine,

Shall reach thy goal divine?

Thither, O rapt and holy Fire,

Thither, bid me aspire,

That when my spirit’s flame burns free,

It shall ascend with thee.