THOU SHALT NOT KILL
I had grown weary of him; of his breath And hands and features I was sick to death. Each day I heard the same dull voice and tread; I did not hate him: but I wished him dead. And he must with his blank face fill my life— Then my brain blackened; and I snatched a knife. But ere I struck, my soul's grey deserts through A voice cried, 'Know at least what thing you do.' 'This is a common man: knowest thou, O soul, What this thing is? somewhere where seasons roll There is some living thing for whom this man Is as seven heavens girt into a span, For some one soul you take the world away— Now know you well your deed and purpose. Slay!' Then I cast down the knife upon the ground And saw that mean man for one moment crowned. I turned and laughed: for there was no one by— The man that I had sought to slay was I.