A Visionary

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Bolton Hall. "A Visionary".

Publication history

Text

THE interpreter took me by the hand, and led me into a cave, across the mouth of which was a great gully; and one standing on the hither side of the gully was building with bridge planks. But, because he could not reach to the further side, he built the frame of a bridge straight up toward heaven.

Then said I, "Why does he build in the air, for in that manner he can never span the gulf?"

The interpreter answered, "Wait and see." And I saw that the man climbed to the top of his framework; and, because he greatly desired to span the gulf, he built out on the side which was toward the opposite bank. When he had builded thus for a long time, the weight of the timbers overbalanced the frame work, so that it fell across the gulf; and it was a bridge for all men to walk upon.

Then said I, "What means this?" The interpreter replied: "He whom you saw is an Idealist, who seems to arrive at nothing, so that men say he is impractical; yet is his mind fixed upon making an advance. Now, when he finds no way of going forward, he aspires to go higher. In the fulness of time his desire creates a way, and the bridge overbalances, so that it spans the chasm."

I asked of him, "But what of the man?" Then answered the interpreter: "His body was crushed in the overturn. Nevertheless, he built the bridge and went over it; 'Yea,' saith the Spirit, 'for they rest from their labours, and their works do follow them.'"