The Sacred Way

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I wake in the night. I turn and think of the age.
What image has it of man; what roots for the mind?
What names now does imagination find
To fix our heritage?

The world I grew up in now belongs to the past;
Round my cradle, behind my pillow there stood
Hercules, Samson, Roland, Robin Hood,
To say: Stand firm, stand fast!

My unripe soul, groping to fill its need,
Found in those legends a food by which it grew.
Whatever we learned, the heroes were what we knew.
We were fortunate indeed.

We have lost that world. How shall my son go on
To form his archetypal image of man?
Frankenstein? Faust? Dracula? Don Juan?
O Absolom, my son!

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