In honor of the elegant new collection of George Herbert’s poems from Cambridge University Press, here are five of our favorite poems of his that are featured in this new book:
George Herbert: 100 Poems
Hardback: Cambridge UP, June 2016.
Buy now: [ Amazon ]
LOve built a stately house; where Fortune came,
And spinning phansies, she was heard to say,
That her fine cobwebs did support the frame,
Whereas they were supported by the same:
But Wisdome quickly swept them all away.
Then Pleasure came, who, liking not the fashion,
Began to make Balcones, Terraces,
Till she had weakned all by alteration:
But rev’rend laws, and many a proclamation
Reformed all at length with menaces.
Then enter’d Sinne, and with that Sycomore,
Whose leaves first sheltred man from drought & dew,
Working and winding slily evermore,
The inward walls and sommers1 cleft and tore:
But Grace shor’d these, and cut that as it grew.
Then Sinne combin’d with Death in a firm band
To rase the building to the very floore:
Which they effected, none could them withstand.
But Love and Grace took Glorie by the hand,
And built a braver Palace then before.
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