Friday, August 24, 2007

...and taking names (2.75: Herbert Excursus)

I am sorry to have to keep interjecting poets into theology (ok, not really), but I was reading George Herbert this morning and came across this gem. It seemed a fitting follow-up to Donne and a nice intimation at a response to wtm's questions regarding my Interlude.

"The World"

Love built a stately house, where Fortune came,
And spinning fancies, she was heard to say,
That her fine cobwebs did support the frame,
Whereas they were supported by the same:
But Wisdom quickly swept them all away.

Then Pleasure came, who liking not the fashion,
Began to make Balconies, Terraces,
Till she had weakened all by alteration:
But rev'rend laws, and many a proclamation
Reformed all at length with menaces.

Then enter'd Sin, and with that Sycomore,
Whose leaves first sheltered man from drought and dew,
Working and winding slily evermore,
The inward walls and Sommers cleft and tore:
But Grace shor'd these, and cut that as it grew.

Then Sin combin'd with Death in a firm band
To raze the building to the very floor:
Which they effected, none could them withstand.
But Love and Grace took Glory by the hand,
And built a braver Palace than before.

I will forego interpretation for the moment. The next post should be a nice exposition of this poem, not least the last stanza.

Pax vobiscum, y'all.

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