The Golden Bird

Henry Miller

Portrait of Author Henry Miller

By Henry Miller


Conditioned to ecstasy, the poet is like a gorgeous
unknown bird mired in the ashes of thought. If he
succeeds in freeing himself, it is to make a sacrificial
flight to the sun. His dreams of a regenerate world
are but the reverberations of his own fevered pulse beats.

He imagines the world will follow him, but in the blue
he finds himself alone. Alone but surrounded by his
creations; sustained, therefore, to meet the supreme
sacrifice. The impossible has been achieved; the
duologue of author with Author is consummated. And now
forever through the ages the song expands, warming
all hearts, penetrating all minds. At the periphery
the world is dying away; at the center it glows
like a live coal.

In the great solar heart of the universe the golden birds
are gathered in unison. There it is forever dawn,
forever peace, harmony and communion.

Man does not look to the sun in vain; he demands
light and warmth not for the corpse which he will
one day discard but for his inner being. His greatest
desire is to burn with ecstasy, to commerge his little
flame with the central fire of the universe. If he accords
the angels wings so that they may come to him with messages
of peace, harmony and radiance from worlds beyond, it is
only to nourish his own dreams of flight, to sustain his own
belief that he will one day reach beyond himself,
and on wings of gold.

One creation matches another; in essence they are all alike.
The brotherhood of man consists not in thinking alike, nor in
acting alike, but in aspiring to praise creation. The song
of creation springs from the ruins of earthly endeavor.
The outer man dies away in order to reveal the golden bird
which is winging its way toward divinity.

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