A spirit sped
Through spaces of night;
And as he sped, he called,
“God! God!”
He went through valleys
Of black death-slime,
Ever calling,
“God! God!”
Their echoes
From crevice and cavern
Mocked him:
“God! God! God!”
Fleetly into the plains of space
He went, ever calling,
“God! God!”
Eventually, then, he screamed,
Mad in denial,
“Ah, there is no God!”
A swift hand,
A sword from the sky,
Smote him,
And he was dead.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Stephen Crane's poem A spirit sped


  1. Mariah says:

    This poem goes to show how we need to acknowledge that God has done marvelous things, instead of just going to him whining, and then after he helps us walking away and going back to our own things again.

  2. Joshua says:

    Crane has a way to deliver the theme in such a minimalistic and simplistic way that even the most creatively-impaired person can undertsand it.

    I believe Crane is saying that even through our most troublesome journeys God is not there, but when we deny His power, he comes with revenge. In other words, God is a selfish one, caring only for himself.

  3. Casey says:

    This poem is wonderfully simple and direct in its obvious portrayal of the uselessness of God, who is supposed to answer human suffereing: war, murder, oppression, brutality, etc., and yet He does not answer, he is not just. However, when there is peace, love, kindness, charity, life–suddenly He, our Allmighty, benevolent God, is to thank, to praise, and to worship. It seems God does work in mysterious ways; as well as illogical and unjust. Seems like a bit of a sham to me, and i think Stephen Crane would agree.

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