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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps. A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes. 1891.
Vols. IX–XI: Literature of the Republic, Part IV., 1861–1889

The Hymn of Force

By William Roscoe Thayer (Paul Hermes) (1859–1923)

I AM eternal!

I throb through the ages;

I am the master

Of each of Life’s stages.

I quicken the blood

Of the mate-craving lover;

The age-frozen heart

With daisies I cover.

Down through the ether

I hurl constellations;

Up from their earth-bed

I wake the carnations.

I laugh in the flame

As I kindle and fan it;

I crawl in the worm;

I leap in the planet.

Forth from its cradle

I pilot the river;

In lightning and earthquake

I flash and I quiver.

My breath is the wind;

My bosom the ocean;

My form’s undefined;

My essence is motion.

The braggarts of science

Would weigh and divide me;

Their wisdom evading,

I vanish and hide me.

My glances are rays

From stars emanating;

My voice through the spheres

Is sound, undulating.

I am the monarch

Uniting all matter;

The atoms I gather,

The atoms I scatter.

I pulse with the tides—

Now hither, now thither;

I grant the tree sap;

I bid the bud wither.

I always am present,

Yet nothing can bind me;

Like thought, evanescent,

They lose me who find me.