His Vision

I never saw the root of the real
In arboreal flare,
Nor witnessed this man walk on water,
Nor that one float in air.
 
I sat beneath the bodhi tree;
I felt my body itch.
Between the true cup and the false
I knew not which was which.
 
My eyes have never blown like fuses
Sparked black upon a wall,
No surge of sight or insight mine,
No whisper, and no call.
 
My thousand suns have been my twins,
My Beatrice, my wife,
My way to immortality
The living of the life—
 
No visage singed into a shroud
Or knotted in a tree.
A newborn in a swaddling-cloth
Was the vision given me:
 
Someday the faces round my sickbed
Will blur and superimpose
Into that single human Face
The visionaries know,
 
My humble human loves collected
And, for the first time, seen
Intensely, like diffraction
Narrowed to a beam.
Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.

Advertisement

Don't miss the best from America

Sign up for our Newsletter to get the Jesuit perspective on news, faith and culture.

The latest from america

Pope Francis has appointed 16 members (eight men and eight women) to the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors.
Gerard O’ConnellFebruary 17, 2018
This time the victims themselves are not having it. From the moment the first shots rang out, they captured the horror and broadcast it, forced the nation to confront it and talk about it.
Kevin ClarkeFebruary 16, 2018

Given the moment we are in, you might think a lot of shows on television would be trying to talk about current events or “America” in some way. But in point of fact, there aren’t that many. And even fewer are doing it well.

Jim McDermottFebruary 16, 2018
A conversation with Liel Leibovitz and Stephanie Butnick on faith, fasting and podcasting
Olga SeguraFebruary 16, 2018