Henry Vaughan – Seven Favorite Poems !

Henry Vaughan Poems

Tomorrow, April 17, marks the birthday of poet Henry Vaughan…

We honor the occasion with seven of our favorite poems by Henry Vaughan …

Henry Vaughan (17 April 1621 – 23 April 1695) was a Welsh metaphysical poet, author, translator, and physician, who wrote in English. He is chiefly known for religious poetry contained in Silex Scintillans, published in 1650, with a second part in 1655. In 1646 his poems, with the Tenth Satyre of Juvenal Englished, were published, followed by a second volume in 1647. Meanwhile, he had been “converted” by reading the religious poet George Herbert and gave up “idle verse”. The prose Mount of Olives or Solitary Devotions (1652) show the depth of his religious convictions and the authenticity of his poetic genius. (via Wikipedia)

Henry Vaughan: Oxford Poetry Library

Henry Vaughan

BRIGHT shadows of true rest ! some shoots of bliss ;
Heaven once a week ;
The next world’s gladness preposses’d in this ;
A day to seek
Eternity in time ; the steps by which
We climb above all ages ; lamps that light
Man through his heap of dark days ; and the rich
And full redemption of the whole week’s flight !

The pulleys unto headlong man ; Time’s bower ;
The narrow way ;
Transplanted Paradise ; God’s walking hour,
The cool o’ th’ day !
The creature’s jubilee ; God’s parle with dust ;
Heaven here ; man on those hills of myrrh, and flowers ;
Angels descending ; the returns of trust ;
A gleam of glory after six-days-showers !

The Church’s love-feasts ; Time’s prerogative,
And interest
Deducted from the whole ; the combs, and hive,
And home of rest.
The milky way chalk’d out with suns ; a clue
That guides through erring hours ; and in full story
A taste of heav’n on earth ; the pledge and cue
Of a full feast ; and the out-Courts of glory.

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