35. XXXV. THE SUBLIME ONES.
Calm is the bottom of my sea: who would guess that it hideth droll
Unmoved is my depth: but it sparkleth with swimming enigmas and laughters.
A sublime one saw I to-day, a solemn one, a penitent of the spirit: Oh,
how my soul laughed at his ugliness!
With upraised breast, and like those who draw in their breath: thus did he
stand, the sublime one, and in silence:
O'erhung with ugly truths, the spoil of his hunting, and rich in torn
raiment; many thorns also hung on him--but I saw no rose.
Not yet had he learned laughing and beauty. Gloomy did this hunter return
from the forest of knowledge.
From the fight with wild beasts returned he home: but even yet a wild
beast gazeth out of his seriousness--an unconquered wild beast!
As a tiger doth he ever stand, on the point of springing; but I do not like
those strained souls; ungracious is my taste towards all those self-engrossed ones.
And ye tell me, friends, that there is to be no dispute about taste and
tasting? But all life is a dispute about taste and tasting!
Taste: that is weight at the same time, and scales and weigher; and alas
for every living thing that would live without dispute about weight and
scales and weigher!
Should he become weary of his sublimeness, this sublime one, then only will
his beauty begin--and then only will I taste him and find him savoury.
And only when he turneth away from himself will he o'erleap his own shadow
--and verily! into HIS sun.
Far too long did he sit in the shade; the cheeks of the penitent of the
spirit became pale; he almost starved on his expectations.