George Herbert

(3 April 1593 – 1 March 1633 / Montgomery, Wales)

The Search - Poem by George Herbert

Whither, O, whither art thou fled,
My Lord, my Love?
My searches are my daily bread;
Yet never prove.

My knees pierce th'earth, mine eies the skie;
And yet the sphere
And centre both to me denie
That thou art there.

Yet can I mark how herbs below
Grow green and gay,
As if to meet thee they did know,
While I decay.

Yet can I mark how starres above
Simper and shine,
As having keyes unto they love,
While poore I pine.

I sent a sigh to seek thee out,
Deep drawn in pain,
Wing'd like an arrow: but my scout
Returns in vain.

I tun'd another (having store)
Into a grone;
Because the search was dumbe before:
But all was one.

Lord, dost thou some new fabrick mold
Which favour winnes,
And keeps thee present, leaving th' old
Unto their sinnes?

Where is my God? what hidden place
Conceals thee still?
What covert dare eclipse thy face?
Is it thy will?

O let not that of any thing;
Let rather brasse,
Or steel, or mountains be thy ring,
And I will passe.

Thy will such an intrenching is,
As passeth thought:
To it all strength, all subtilties
Are things of nought.

Thy will such a strange distance is,
As that to it
East and West touch, the poles do kisse,
And parallels meet.

Since then my grief must be as large,
As is thy space,
Thy distance from me; see my charge,
Lord, see my case.

O take these barres, these lengths away;
Turn, and restore me:
Be not Almightie, let me say,
Against, but for me.

When thou dost turn, and wilt be neare;
What edge so keen,
What point so piercing can appeare
To come between?

For as thy absence doth excell
All distance known:
So doth thy nearenesse bear the bell,
Making two one.

Topic(s) of this poem: irony

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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, March 24, 2015

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