"Come down," the voices said to me, "from your remote celestial heights.
Recoil upon yourself and get embroiled with stormy ocean-tides.
Ride where the billow rides,
And make new waves besides.
Arise as pearls whose sheen abides."

I did not buy the luxury of losing myself in the sea;
I did not taste the wine which robs you of your self-identity.
Another I refused to be:
Said goodby to the sky
And chose the tulip’s company.

The tulip said, "O what is all this tumult of birdsong?
And why do all those morning songsters on the treetops throng?
Why all this flitting up and down daylong?
And should the rose to thorns belong?
O is not this quite wrong?

"Who are you and who am I and why do we thus consort?
And wherefore are my branches all these singing birds’ resort?
What is their singing’s long and short?
And what is in the breezes heart?
What is this garden in which they disport ?"
"It is," I said. "a battlefield of life’s war raging everywhere,
A unity of many, each one separately self-aware.
To breathe is to sing songs of fire.
The soul? The inner being’s self-exposure.
This is the secret of God’s empire.

"I have descended from the skies and you have grown up out of dust.
They both are forms of self-display, my fall and your upthrust.
You writhed within a tree-stem first
Until your hundred veils were burst –
And then you reached your being’s crest.

"The sap that rises in the world’s veins is our morning tears;
Our own illusion are those upper and these lower spheres.
Part of our being are the stars,
Our kith and kin and our confreres:
They are our eyes and we the seers.
"Just like a needle in a damsel’s garment is the rose’s thorn:
Close to the rose, its boon companion and with it twin.born;
All thin and wan like one lovelorn,
Though in the dear one’s bosom borne –
Another prank of the spring morn!

"Arise and re-engage your heart with friendships of the early days;
And with the sun, the tulip of the sky, exchange a knowing gaze.
Consort with those with seeing eyes;
Like me take to celestial ways –
Have you the will to soar the skies ?