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Canto LVI

"So careful of the type?" but no.    From scarped cliff and quarried stone    She cries, "A thousand types are gone: I care for nothing, all shall go.

"Thou makest thine appeal to me:    I bring to life, I bring to death:    The spirit does but mean the breath: I know no more." And he, shall he,

Man, her last work, who seem'd so fair,    Such splendid purpose in his eyes,    Who roll'd the psalm to wintry skies, Who built him fanes of fruitless prayer,

Who trusted God was love indeed   And love Creation's final law—   Tho' Nature, red in tooth and claw With ravine, shriek'd against his creed—

Who loved, who suffer'd countless ills,   Who battled for the True, the Just,   Be blown about the desert dust, Or seal'd within the iron hills?

No more? A monster then, a dream,    A discord. Dragons of the prime,    That tare each other in their slime, Were mellow music match'd with him.

O life as futile, then, as frail!    O for thy voice to soothe and bless!    What hope of answer, or redress? Behind the veil, behind the veil.

-Alfred Lord Tennyson, In Memoriam A. H. H., Canto LVI

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