The final lines from Ezra Pound’s “Canto LXXXI:”
What thou lovest well remains,the rest is drossWhat thou lov’st well shall not be reft from theeWhat thou lov’st well is thy true heritageWhose world, or mine or theirsor is it of none?First came the seen, then thus the palpableElysium, though it were in the halls of hell,What thou lovest well is thy true heritageWhat thou lov’st well shall not be reft from theeThe ant’s a centaur in his dragon world.Pull down thy vanity, it is not manMade courage, or made order, or made grace,Pull down thy vanity, I say pull down.Learn of the green world what can be thy placeIn scaled invention or true artistry,Pull down thy vanity,Paquin pull down!The green casque has outdone your elegance.“Master thyself, then others shall thee beare”Pull down thy vanityThou art a beaten dog beneath the hail,A swollen magpie in a fitful sun,Half black half whiteNor knowst’ou wing from tailPull down thy vanityHow mean thy hatesFostered in falsity,Pull down thy vanity,Rathe to destroy, niggard in charity,Pull down thy vanity,I say pull down.But to have done instead of not doingthis is not vanityTo have, with decency, knockedThat a Blunt should openTo have gathered from the air a live traditionor from a fine old eye the unconquered flameThis is not vanity.Here error is all in the not done,all in the diffidence that faltered . . .
And here’s a video of Ezra Pound as an old man reciting these final lines:
H/T: Tom Ward