Politics, Bah

It's Easter, and we're all buzzed on booze and meat and cheese and sugar after Lenten exertions. Let's have some poetry instead. Everybody's doing it. Mere Comments has been running George Herbert all week, and today offers up:

The Incarnation & Passion (Henry Vaughn, 1650)
Lord! when thou didst thyself undress,
Laying by thy robes of glory,
To make us more, thou wouldst be less,
And becam'st a woeful story.

To put on clouds instead of light,
And clothe the morning star with dust,
Was a translation of such height
As, but in thee, was ne'er expressed;

Brave worms, and earth! that thus could have
A God enclosed within your cell,
Your Maker pent up in a grave,
Life locked in death, heaven in a shell;

Ah, my dear Lord, what couldst thou spy
In this impure, rebellious clay,
That made thee thus resolve to die
For those that kill thee every day?

O what strange wonders could thee move
To slight thy precious blood, and breath!
Sure it was Love, my Lord; for Love
Is only stronger far than death.

The Corner's serving this, transcribed by John Julius Norwich from an inscription on a clock pendulum in a church in Kent.

When as a child I laughed and wept
Time crept.
When as a youth I dreamed and talked
Time walked.
When I became a full-grown man
Time ran.
And later as I older grew
Time flew.
Soon shall I find when traveling on
Time gone.
Will Christ have saved my soul by then?

If you want a splendid example not only of muscular Christianity, but the power of language to embody culture, go to ninme's and read her correspondent Rueful Red's submission, On The Resurrection of Christ by William Dunbar. It's written in 16th c. Scottish, but if you heed his advice and read it aloud, you'll get it. And you'll have a burr by the end, too. It's in the words themselves.