A Dizzying Surmise

What if that fieriest Substance—found so late—
That cousin to the uranium of the sun—
Were proved a cause of all that we have done
And dreamed and been? A source of love and hate,
Vileness and valour, and beauty nobly great!
What if all this, ere Nature had begun
Man's fashioning, lay closed and hidden in one
Miraculous God-sown seed of Life and Fate?

Thus was the Genie of the Arabian tale
Sealed in a vial for a thousand years
Under the ocean, till a fisher's net
Drew forth the vial, and the fisher set
The captive free—but shrank amazed and pale,
When the loosed Afreet towered against the Spheres.
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