Sunday, May 08, 2016

If you meet George Herbert..........

"If you meet George Herbert on the Road, kill him":
 a reaction to Justin Lewis-Anthony's excellent book.

No Silly!                                                             
If you meet with George Herbert 
on the Road                                                      
Say, “I am going fishing?”
Answer?                                                             
 “We’ll come with you.”

Across the years                                              
there’s you and I;
Simon, Andrew and the Sons of Thunder;
with  George comes John Donne, 
Izaak, the Ferrar boy                                     
Young Thomas and his sister.*

This is, “The contemplative man’s recreation.”
Well said Izaak!                                                      
What do you think George?

Me?                                                                            
A failed courtier? Failed accademic? 
With failing health?                                                
 God’s a fisherman.               
Listen:                                                                       
 When God at first made man, 
Having a glass of blessings standing by, 
“Let us,” said he, “pour on him all we can. 
Let the world’s riches, which dispersèd lie, 
Contract into a span.” 

So strength first made a way; 
Then beauty flowed, then wisdom, honour, pleasure. 
When almost all was out, God made a stay, 
Perceiving that, alone of all his treasure, 
Rest in the bottom lay. 

“For if I should,” said he, 
“Bestow this jewel also on my creature, 
He would adore my gifts instead of me, 
And rest in Nature, not the God of Nature; 
So both should losers be. 

“Yet let him keep the rest, 
But keep them with repining restlessness; 
Let him be rich and weary, that at least, 
If goodness lead him not, yet weariness 
May toss him to my breast.” 

 The Pulley  ........                                                   
What you moderns call a reel.
Thus God draws us to him                        
 misfortunes are our fortune.
Windows 10 upon my screen,                     
I hear your voice  
The eye that looks on glass
On it may stay his eye,
Or if he wishes through it pass
And thus the heavens espy.

If you meet George Herbert on the road,
Say I am going fishing



* Izaak Walton the author of the Complete Angler was a fishing chum of Nicholas Ferrar, John Donne and George Herbert. Izaak was Herbert's biographer, husband to Thomas Ken's elder half sister and guardian to the young Thomas. They along with the fishermen Peter, James, John and Andrew and you (?)  and I are invited to be friends with Jesus of Nazareth.

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