Arthur Hugh Clough

(1 January 1819 – 13 November 1861 / Liverpool)

Through A Glass Darkly - Poem by Arthur Hugh Clough

What we, when face to face we see
The Father of our souls, shall be,
John tells us, doth not yet appear;
Ah! did he tell what we are here!

A mind for thoughts to pass into,
A heart for loves to travel through,
Five senses to detect things near,
Is this the whole that we are here?

Rules baffle instincts--instinct rules,
Wise men are bad--and good are fools,
Facts evil--wishes vain appear,
We cannot go, why are we here?

O may we for assurance's sake,
Some arbitrary judgement take,
And wilfully pronounce it clear,
For this or that 'tis we are here?

Or is it right, and will it do,
To pace the sad confusion through,
And say:--It doth not yet appear,
What we shall be, what we are here?

Ah yet, when all is thought and said,
The heart still overrules the head;
Still what we hope we must believe,
And what is given us receive;

Must still believe, for still we hope
That in a world of larger scope,
What here is faithfully begun
Will be completed, not undone.

My child, we still must think, when we
That ampler life together see,
Some true result will yet appear
Of what we are, together, here.


Comments about Through A Glass Darkly by Arthur Hugh Clough

  • Ratnakar Mandlik (8/18/2016 11:00:00 PM)


    Rules baffle instincts- instincts rules
    What we shall be and what for we are here!
    A profound thought provoking poem. Thanks for sharing it here.
    .... (Report) Reply

    0 person liked.
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  • Susan Williams Susan Williams (8/18/2016 2:28:00 PM)


    This is quite a thought provoking examination of religious beliefs. I cannot tell which side of the arguments won- which is a good thing. We are given free rein to delve into the questions and seek our own answers (Report) Reply

  • Rajnish Manga Rajnish Manga (8/18/2016 5:26:00 AM)


    This is indeed a very thoughtful or rather an extremely thought provoking poem Thanks.
    A mind for thoughts to pass into,
    A heart for loves to travel through,
    Five senses to detect things near, (Report) Reply

  • Edward Kofi Louis Edward Kofi Louis (8/18/2016 12:08:00 AM)


    Of our souls! Thanks for sharing. (Report) Reply

Read all 4 comments »



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Read poems about / on: believe, travel, together, hope, evil, father, sad, child, heart, world, children



Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003



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