Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, AN ART-LOVER TO CHRIST, by RACHEL ANNAND TAYLOR

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

AN ART-LOVER TO CHRIST, by                 Poet's Biography
First Line: If these I love, what love have I for thee
Last Line: For thou art noble; and I love them best.
Subject(s): Christianity; Jesus Christ; Love

(Towards the End of the Ages of Faith)

IF these I love, what love have I for Thee,
Since in her treasuries the heart will be?
Some, it may be, shall triumph, strong to seek
And find both these and Thee. But I am weak.
Unto mine idols am I wedded fast;
And with them would I perish at the last.

(O beauty of great colour, great desires,
Great throes of music, clangour of great spires,
Mystical marvel of great verse, great dream
Of carven faces, and O thou supreme
Beauty of perfect love, the perfect art,—
Ye do consume with ecstasy mine heart.
God's images?—Nay, for your only sake
I flower and fade, labour and dream and wake.)

Not Thee and these! Thou art too great and sweet
To brook a cloven worship at Thy feet.
I do not murmur. Fold Thy lovers, Thou,
In Thy blue Arcady. But here and now
I gather all the joy of Paradise
With faint adoring hands, and soft stilled eyes.

These perish; Thou endurest?—Even so.
All perishing things are loveliest, I know.
The Music these, the fainting Echo I,—
Rather than live with Thee, with them I die!
Nor shall thine angry trumpets rend that rest,
For Thou art noble; and I love Them best.

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