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Posts Tagged ‘We think that Paradise and Calvary’

Hymn to God, My God, in My Sickness

 Since I am coming to that holy room,
        Where, with thy choir of saints for evermore,
    I shall be made thy music; as I come
        I tune the instrument here at the door,
        And what I must do then, think here before.

    Whilst my physicians by their love are grown
        Cosmographers, and I their map, who lie
    Flat on this bed, that by them may be shown
        That this is my south-west discovery,
    Per fretum febris, by these straits to die,

  I joy, that in these straits I see my west;
      For, though their currents yield return to none,
  What shall my west hurt me? As west and east
      In all flat maps (and I am one) are one,
      So death doth touch the resurrection.

  Is the Pacific Sea my home? Or are
      The eastern riches? Is Jerusalem?
  Anyan, and Magellan, and Gibraltar,
      All straits, and none but straits, are ways to them,
      Whether where Japhet dwelt, or Cham, or Shem.

  We think that Paradise and Calvary,
      Christ’s cross, and Adam’s tree, stood in one place;
  Look, Lord, and find both Adams met in me;
      As the first Adam’s sweat surrounds my face,
      May the last Adam’s blood my soul embrace.

  So, in his purple wrapp’d, receive me, Lord;
      By these his thorns, give me his other crown;
  And as to others’ souls I preach’d thy word,
      Be this my text, my sermon to mine own:
  “Therefore that he may raise, the Lord throws down.”

John Donne died this date, 3/31/1631.  Donne was born on Bread Street, 1/24/1573 at London.  He was first educated by Jesuits, then studied at Oxford and later Cambridge.  He was twenty-one when he left the Roman Catholic system though he did not publish his Pseudo-Martyr and Ignatius his Conclave (anti-catholic works) until 1610, 1611 respectfully.  He was ordained for Church of England and became known as one of the more remarkable poet-preachers of his day. Some of his earlier poetry is undesirable but his later works show a clear spiritual side. Devotions upon Emergent Occasions (1623-1624) contains his most quoted line: “No man is an island, entire of itself…any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankind.”  A couple other well known lines are “For whom does the bell toll?  It tolls for thee” and “Death be not proud.”

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