18 July 2007


Last week, while preparing a sermon on “Peace” (in a series on the Fruit of the Spirit) I came across this poem by Henry Vaughan (1622-1695). He was an English country doctor, and while I understand that the quality of his poetry could be uneven, this one, it seems to me, is able to stand amongst those of his more famous contemporaries, Herbert and Donne:

My soul, there is a country
Far beyond the stars,
Where stands a wingèd sentry
All skilful in the wars:
There, above noise and danger,
Sweet Peace sits crown’d with smiles,
And One born in a manger
Commands the beauteous files.
He is thy gracious Friend,
And—O my soul, awake!—
Did in pure love descend
To die here for thy sake.
If thou canst get but thither,
There grows the flower of Peace,
The Rose that cannot wither,
Thy fortress, and thy ease.
Leave then thy foolish ranges;
For none can thee secure
But One who never changes—
Thy God, thy life, thy cure.

No comments: