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(1554 - 1586 / Kent / England)

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Psalm 139

O Lord in me there lieth nought
But to thy search revealed lies;
For when I sit
Thou markest it:
Nor less thou notest when I rise:
Yea, closest closet of my thought
Hath open windows to thine eyes.

Thou walkest with me when I walk;
When to my bed for rest I go,
I find thee there,
And everywhere,
Not youngest thought in me doth grow,
No, not one word I cast to talk
But, yet unuttered, thou dost know.

If forth I march, thou goest before;
If back I turn, thou com'st behind;
So forth nor back
Thy guard I lack;
Nay, on me too thy hand I find.
Well I thy wisdom may adore,
But never reach with earthly mind.

To shun thy notice, leave thine eye,
O whither might I take my way?
To starry sphere?
Thy throne is there:
To dead men's undelightsome stay?
There is thy walk, and there to lie
Unknown, in vain should I assay.

O sun, whom light nor flight can match!
Suppose thy lightful flightful wings
Thou lend to me,
And I could flee
As far as thee the evening brings:
Even led to west he would me catch
Nor should I lurk with western things.

Do thou thy best, O secret night!
In sable veil to cover me:
Thy sable veil
Shall vainly fail:
With day unmasked my night shall be,
For night is day, and darkness light,
O Father of all lights, to thee.

Submitted: Monday, April 12, 2010


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