Francis Thompson

(16 December 1859 – 13 November 1907 / Preston, England)

In No Strange Land (The Kingdom Of God) - Poem by Francis Thompson

The kingdom of God is within you

O world invisible, we view thee,
O world intangible, we touch thee,
O world unknowable, we know thee,
Inapprehensible, we clutch thee!

Does the fish soar to find the ocean,
The eagle plunge to find the air-
That we ask of the stars in motion
If they have rumor of thee there?

Not where the wheeling systems darken,
And our benumbed conceiving soars! -
The drift of pinions, would we hearken,
Beats at our own clay-shuttered doors.

The angels keep their ancient places-
Turn but a stone and start a wing!
'Tis ye, 'tis your estrangèd faces,
That miss the many-splendored thing.

But (when so sad thou canst not sadder)
Cry- and upon thy so sore loss
Shall shine the traffic of Jacob's ladder
Pitched betwixt Heaven and Charing Cross.

Yea, in the night, my Soul, my daughter,
Cry- clinging to Heaven by the hems;
And lo, Christ walking on the water,
Not of Genesareth, but Thames!


Comments about In No Strange Land (The Kingdom Of God) by Francis Thompson

  • (6/15/2006 10:49:00 AM)


    Turn but a stone... compare Matthew 18.10: do not despise one of these little ones...because.... (Report) Reply

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Read poems about / on: loss, daughter, fish, heaven, ocean, sad, water, world, god, night, angel, fishing, star



Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003

Poem Edited: Saturday, April 4, 2015


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