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Poem by Sidney Lanier
The Harlequin of Dreams
Swift, through some trap mine eyes have never found, Dim-panelled in the painted scene of Sleep, Thou, giant Harlequin of Dreams, dost leap Upon my spirit’s stage. Then Sight and Sound, Then Space and Time, then Language, Mete and Bound, And all familiar Forms that firmly keep Man’s reason in the road, change faces, peep Betwixt the legs and mock the daily round. Yet thou canst more than mock: sometimes my tears At midnight break through bounden lids -- a sign Thou hast a heart: and oft thy little leaven Of dream-taught wisdom works me bettered years. In one night witch, saint, trickster, fool divine, I think thou’rt Jester at the Court of Heaven!
Sidney Lanier's other poems:
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