Wednesday, October 19, 2005

George Herbert poem:

from The Temple (1633)--

¶ Giddinesse.

OH what a thing is man! how farre from power,
From setled peace and rest!
He is some twentie sev’rall men at least
Each sev’rall houre.

One while he counts of heav’n, as of his treasure:
But then a thought creeps in,
And calls him coward, who for fear of sinne
Will lose a pleasure.

Now he will fight it out, and to the warres;
Now eat his bread in peace,
And snudge in quiet: now he scorns increase;
Now all day spares.

He builds a house, which quickly down must go,
As if a whirlwinde blew
And crusht the building; and it’s partly true,
His minde is so.

O what a sight were Man, if his attires
Did alter with his minde;
And like a Dolphins skinne, his clothes combin’d
With his desires!

Surely if each one saw anothers heart,
There would be no commerce,
No sale or bargain passe: all would disperse,
And live apart.

Lord, mend or rather make us: one creation
Will not suffice our turn:
Except thou make us dayly, we shall spurn
Our own salvation.

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