Clark Ashton Smith

Alchemy of Sorrow

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One with his fervor shall inform
The world, and one with all his sorrow:
One sees a glad, unsetting morrow,
One hears the whisper of the worm.


Hermes unknown, whose hand assists
My toil, and fills my dreams with fear,
Through thee I am the mournful peer
Of Midas, first of alchemists.


Fine gold to iron corruptible
I turn, and paradise to hell;
In winding-sheets of cloud and levin
A dear cadaver I descry;
And build upon the shores of heaven
Towering proud sarcophagi

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Clark Ashton Smith