Dinah Maria Mulock Craik

(20 April 1826 - 12 October 1887 / Stoke-on-Trent / England)

On The Cliff-Top - Poem by Dinah Maria Mulock Craik

FACE upward to the sky
Quiet I lie:
Quiet as if the finger of God's will
Had bade this human mechanism 'be still!'
And sent the intangible essence, this strange I,
All wondering forth to His eternity.

Below, the sea's sound, faint
As dying saint
Telling of gone-by sorrows long at rest:
Above, the fearless sea-gull's shimmering breast
Painted a moment on the dark blue skies--
A hovering joy, that while I watch it flies.

Alike unheeded now
Old griefs, and thou
Quick-wingèd Joy, that like a bird at play
Pleasest thyself to visit me to-day:
On the cliff-top, earth dim and heaven clear,
My soul lies calmly, above hope--or fear.

But not--(do Thou forbid
Whose stainless lid
Wept tears at Lazarus' grave, and looking down
Afar off, upon Solyma's doomed town.)
Ah, not above love--human yet divine--
Which, Thee seen first, in Thee sees all of Thine!

Is't sunset? The keen breeze
Blows from the seas:
And at my side a pleasant vision stands
With her brown eyes and kind extended hands.
Dear, we'll go down together and full fain
From the cliff-top to the busy world again.


Comments about On The Cliff-Top by Dinah Maria Mulock Craik

  • Robert Murray Smith (7/9/2016 8:39:00 PM)


    A very evocative poem. (Report) Reply

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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, April 13, 2010



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