OUT OF THE DUST - Charles Dickens Poems

 
 

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OUT OF THE DUST

Out of the dust of all the past I came:
     My body is compact of memories
Of other lives in other forms than this,
     And I am kin to birds and beasts and trees.

Out of the dust of fairer things I came --
     Some ancient flower whose name we do not know,
Some fallen tree that saw strange altars lit
     With sacrificial fires of long ago.

Some humble moth that scorned the candle's flame
     And dared to set the far-off moon its goal,
Has left to me the lure of moonlit skies
     And all the futile yearning of its soul.

And what is now my heart was once a shell
     Upon the sands and heard the sea complain
From hour to hour in murmurous monotone,
     And holds remembrance of its ageless pain.

Unto the dust I shall again return,
     Even as the faded flower, the fallen tree,
The moth that faltered in its moon-ward flight,
     The shell that crumbled by the plangent sea.