Renunciation, by Patrick Pearse

Eleanor Hull
Volume Two, Appendix VIII


Naked I saw thee,

O beauty of beauty,

And I blinded my eyes

For fear I should fail.

I heard thy music,

O melody of melody,

And I closed my ears

For fear I should falter.

I tasted thy mouth,

O sweetness of sweetness,

And I hardened my heart

For fear of my slaying.

I blinded my eyes,

And I closed my ears,

I hardened my heart

And I smothered my desire.

I turned my back

On the vision I had shaped,

And to this road before me

I turned my face.

I have turned my face

To this road before me,

To the deed that I see

And the death I shall die.