Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, IN CHURCH, by GORDON BOTTOMLEY

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IN CHURCH, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: The priest, in thoughtless daily use
Last Line: That proud tired yielding to the sun's.
Subject(s): Public Worship; Church Attendance

THE priest, in thoughtless daily use,
Delivered the fairy tale of Eve:
I felt what made good Greeks believe
That Bacchos came from a thigh of Zeus,

Thanked my complete omnivolent God
Who made the serpent with suave power
In that ungoverned knowing hour
Creators see He must have trod.

I thanked the God for all the joy
Ordained for me by Eve's best sin:
Except for God she might have been
Stainless and ever a garden-toy.

In her the Mother sinned for us,
Bringing us evil and more good;
Growth and a soul from this ensued.
'Twas soul's first instinct so to choose.

The preacher read a parable
About a sower sowing seed,
Yea, and about each separate deed
It did to places where it fell.

Some fell upon the stony ground
And swiftly bred abundantly:
This seemed most beautiful to me,
To make such barrenness abound,

Yet most I praised the stony soil
That did so rare and great a thing,
Spending its power to serve its King,
Unmasked by man's officious toil.

Arable man, removing stones,
Might well educe tame hundredfolds,
But not that ardent burst of golds,
That proud tired yielding to the sun's.

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