Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, PEACE, by GEORGE HERBERT



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PEACE, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: Sweet peace, where dost thou dwell? I humbly crave
Last Line: "is only there."
Subject(s): Faith; Jerusalem; Worship; Belief; Creed


Sweet Peace, where dost thou dwell? I humbly crave,
Let me once know.
I sought thee in a secret cave;
And asked if Peace were there.
A hollow wind did seem to answer, "No!
Go, seek elsewhere."

I did; and, going, did a rainbow note:
"Surely," thought I,
"This is the lace of Peace's coat.
I will search out the matter."
But, while I looked, the clouds immediately
Did break and scatter.

Then went I to a garden, and did spy
A gallant flower, --
The crown-imperial. "Sure," said I,
"Peace at the root must dwell."
But, when I digged, I saw a worm devour
What showed so well.

At length I met a reverend, good old man;
Whom when for Peace
I did demand, he thus began:
"There was a prince of old
At Salem dwelt, who lived with good increase
Of flock and fold.

"He sweetly lived; yet sweetness did not save
His life from foes.
But, after death, out of his grave
There sprang twelve stalks of wheat;
Which many wondering at, got some of those
To plant and set.

"It prospered strangely, and did soon disperse
Through all the earth.
For they that taste it do rehearse,
That virtue lies therein, --
A secret virtue, bringing peace and mirth,
By flight of sin.

"Take of this grain, which in my garden grows,
And grows for you:
Make bread of it; and that repose
And peace which everywhere
With so much earnestness you do pursue,
Is only there."




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