Once a Week (magazine)/Series 1/Volume 9/A thought on Man

Contributor unknown.


In the long past, what time fair Science smiled
A new-born thing in helpless infant state,
One sang of all-inventive[1] Man—how great
His skill of art; how he could render mild
The rough-maned horse, and bison of the wild,
O’erpass the surging deep, could subjugate
Earth, sea, and air, all things—save only Fate;
How language he had learnt, and laws compiled.
Yet scarce the Poet’s prophet-soul divined
All that the coming years should bring to light,
When matter had been taught to yield to mind,
And Science gained the acmè of her might.
But what though all else yield him victory?
Man’s victor still is Hades—and shall be.

J. B. S.

  1. Sophocles (Antig., 248.)