The Dry Salvages

The Dry Salvages

(excerpt)

Fare forward, travellers! Not escaping from the past 
Into indifferent lives, or into any future; 
You are not the same people who left that station 
Or who will arrive at any terminus, 
While the narrowing rails slide together behind you; 
And on the deck of the drumming liner 
Watching the furrow that widens behind you, 
You shall not think ‘the past is finished’ 
Or ‘the future is before us’. 
At nightfall, in the rigging and the aerial, 
Is a voice descanting (though not to the ear, 
The murmuring shell of time, and not in any language)

Fare forward, you who think that you are voyaging; 
You are not those who saw the harbour 
Receding, or those who will disembark. 
Here between the hither and the farther shore 
While time is withdrawn, consider the future 
And the past with an equal mind. 
At the moment which is not of action or inaction 
You can receive this: “on whatever sphere of being 
The mind of man may be intent 
At the time of death” – that is the one action 
(And the time of death is every moment) 
Which will fructify in the lives of others: 
And do not think of the fruit of action. 
Fare Forward.

O voyagers, O seamen,
You who came to port, and you whose bodies
Will suffer the trial and judgement of the sea,
Or whatever event, this is your real destination.”
So Krishna, as when he admonished Arjuna
On the field of battle.
Not fare well,
But fare forward, voyagers.

~ T.S. Eliot ~ 

(Collected Poems)
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One Response to The Dry Salvages

  1. James Mack says:

    Wow…beautiful, fellow traveler.

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