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The Treasure

Robinson Jeffers 1887 (Allegheny) – 1962 (Carmel-by-the-Sea)



Mountains, a moment's earth-waves rising and hollowing; the
earth too's an ephemerid; the stars-
Short-lived as grass the stars quicken in the nebula and dry in their
summer, they spiral
Blind up space, scattered black seeds of a future; nothing lives
long, the whole sky's
Recurrences tick the seconds of the hours of the ages of the gulf
before birth, and the gulf
After death is like dated: to labor eighty years in a notch of
eternity is nothing too tiresome,
Enormous repose after, enormous repose before, the flash of
activity.
Surely you never have dreamed the incredible depths were prologue
and epilogue merely
To the surface play in the sun, the instant of life, what is called
life? I fancy
That silence is the thing, this noise a found word for it; interjection,
a jump of the breath at that silence;
Stars burn, grass grows, men breathe: as a man finding treasure
says 'Ah!' but the treasure's the essence;
Before the man spoke it was there, and after he has spoken he
gathers it, inexhaustible treasure.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Robinson Jeffers

John Robinson Jeffers was an American poet, known for his work about the central California coast. more…

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