Dreams by Thomas Traherne

‘Tis strange! I saw the Skies;
I saw the Hills before mine Eys;
The Sparrow fly;
The Lands that did about me ly;
The reall Sun, that hev’nly Ey!
Can closed Eys ev’n in the darkest Night
See throu their Lids, and be inform’d with Sight?

The Peeple were to me
As tru as those by day I see;
As tru the Air,
The Earth as sweet, as fresh, as fair
As that which did by day repair
Unto my waking Sense! Can all the Sky,
Can all the World, within my brain-pan ly?

What sacred Secret’s this,
Which seems to intimat my Bliss?
What is there in
The narrow Confines in my Skin,
That is alive and feels within
When am I dead? Can Magnitude possess
An activ Memory, yet not be less?

May all that I can see
Awake, by Night within me be?
My Childhood knew
No Differences, but all was Tru,
As Reall all as what I view;
The World its Self was there. ‘Twas wondrous strange,
That Hev’n and Earth should so their place exchange.

Till that which vulgar Sense
Doth falsly call Experience,
Distinguisht things:
The Ribbans, and the gaudy Wings
Of Birds, the Virtues, and the Sins
That represented were in Dreams by night
As really my Senses did delight,

Or griev, as those I saw
By Day: Things terrible did aw
My soul with Fear;
The Apparitions seem’d as near
As Things could be, and Things they were:
Yet were they all by Fancy in me wrought,
An all their Being founded in a Thought.

O what a Thing is Thought!
Which seems a Dream; yea, seemeth Nought,
Yet doth the Mind

Affect as much what we find
Most near and tru! Sure Men are blind,
And can’t the forcible Reality
Of things that Secret are within them see.

Thought! Surely Thoughts are tru;
They pleas as much as Things can do:
Nay things are dead,
And in themselves are severed
From Souls; nor can they fill the Head
Without our Thoughts. Thoughts are the Reall things
From whence all Joy, from whence all Sorrow springs.

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