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The moving finger writes and, having writ,
moves on; not all your piety nor wit
shall lure it back to cancel half a line,
nor all your tears wash out a word of it.
And that inverted bowl we call the sky,
beneath which we live our little lives and die,
lift not your hands to it for help — for it
revolves as helplessly as you or I.
With Earth's first clay He did the last man knead,
and of the final harvest sowed the seed;
and what the Morning of Creation wrote
is what the Day of Reckoning shall read.
Yesterday this day's madness did prepare;
tomorrow may bring silence, triumph, or despair:
Drink! For you know not whence you came, nor why.
Drink! For you know not why you go, nor where.
And this I know: whether the one true light
Enkindles love or urges me to fight,
I’ll trust one thought within the tavern grasped
Ahead of all the temple maxims trite.