by Yone Noguchi
Out of the deep and the dark,
A sparkling mystery, a shape,
Comes like the stir of the day:
One whose breath is an odour,
Whose eyes show the road to stars,
The breeze in his face,
The glory of Heaven on his back.
He steps like a vision hung in air,
Diffusing the passion of Eternity;
His abode is the sunlight of morn,
The music of eve his speech:
In his sight,
One shall turn from the dust of the grave,
And move upward to the woodland.
About This Poem
“The Poet” was published in Selected Poems of Yone Noguchi (The Four Seas Company, 1921).
Yone Noguchi, the first Japanese-born writer to publish poetry in English, was born in 1875 in Tsushima. His first book of poetry in English was Seen and Unseen, or Monologues of a Homeless Snail (Gelett Burgess & Porter Garnett, 1896). He died in Toyooka-mura on July 13, 1947.