Lionel Johnson

Lonely, unto the Lone I go;
Divine, to the Divinity.

Lionel Pigot Johnson (15 March 18674 October 1902) was an English poet, essayist and critic.

QuotesEdit

What comes now? The earth awaits
What fierce wonder from the skies?
Morning, from the springs of light:
Thunder, round Heaven's opening gates.
  • Ill times may be; she hath no thought of time:
    She reigns beside the waters yet in pride.

    Rude voices cry: but in her ears the chime
    Of full, sad bells brings back her old springtide.

    Like to a queen in pride of place, she wears
    The splendour of a crown in Radcliffe's dome.
    Well fare she, well! As perfect beauty fares;
    And those high places, that are beauty's home.

    • "Oxford"
  • The winds are sometimes sad to me,
    The starry spaces, full of fear;
    Mine is the sorrow on the sea,
    And mine the sigh of places drear.

    Some players upon plaintive strings
    Publish their wistfulness abroad;
    I have not spoken of these things,
    Save to one man, and unto God.

    • "The Precept of Silence"

The Age of a Dream (1890)Edit

Imageries of dreams reveal a gracious age…
  • Now from the broken tower, what solemn bell still tolls,
    Mourning what piteous death? Answer, O saddened souls!
    Who mourn the death of beauty and the death of grace.

By the Statue of King Charles at Charing Cross (1895)Edit

Alone he rides, alone,
The fair and fatal king
King, tried in fires of woe!
Men hunger for thy grace
  • Vanquished in life, his death
    By beauty made amends:
    The passing of his breath
    Won his defeated ends.
  • King, tried in fires of woe!
    Men hunger for thy grace:
    And through the night I go,
    Loving thy mournful face.

    Yet, when the city sleeps;
    When all the cries are still:
    The stars and heavenly deeps
    Work out a perfect will.

The Dark Angel (1895)Edit

Dark Angel, with thine aching lust To rid the world of penitence: Malicious Angel, who still dost My soul such subtile violence!
Through thee, the gracious Muses turn, To Furies, O mine Enemy!
Thou poisonest the fair design Of nature, with unfair device.
Full text at Wikisource
  • Through thee, the gracious Muses turn,
    To Furies, O mine Enemy!
    And all the things of beauty burn
    With flames of evil ecstasy.

    Because of thee, the land of dreams
    Becomes a gathering place of fears
    :
    Until tormented slumber seems
    One vehemence of useless tears.

  • The ardour of red flame is thine,
    And thine the steely soul of ice:
    Thou poisonest the fair design
    Of nature, with unfair device.

    Apples of ashes, golden bright;
    Waters of bitterness, how sweet!
    O banquet of a foul delight,
    Prepared by thee, dark Paraclete!

  • Thou art the whisper in the gloom,
    The hinting tone, the haunting laugh:
    Thou art the adorner of my tomb,
    The minstrel of mine epitaph.
  • I fight thee, in the Holy Name!
    Yet, what thou dost, is what God saith:
    Tempter! should I escape thy flame,
    Thou wilt have helped my soul from Death:

    The second Death, that never dies,
    That cannot die, when time is dead
    :
    Live Death, wherein the lost soul cries,
    Eternally uncomforted.

External linksEdit

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Last modified on 13 April 2014, at 16:34