Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE WORLD, by THOMAS TRAHERNE

Poetry Explorer

Classic and Contemporary Poetry

THE WORLD, by                 Poet's Biography
First Line: When adam first did from his dust arise
Last Line: And ever will the same.
Subject(s): Earth; God; World


When Adam first did from his dust arise,
He did not see,
Nor could there be
A greater joy before his eyes:
The sun as bright for me doth shine;
The spheres above
Do show His love,
While they to kiss the earth incline,
The stars as great a service do;
The moon as much I view
As Adam did, and all God's works divine
Are glorious still, and mine.


Sin spoil'd them; but my Saviour's precious blood
Sprinkled I see
On them to be,
Making them all both safe and good:
With greater rapture I admire
That I from hell
Redeem'd, do dwell
On earth as yet; and here a fire
Not scorching but refreshing glows,
And living water flows,
Which Dives more than silver doth desire,
Of crystals far the best.


What shall I render unto Thee, my God,
For teaching me
The wealth to see
Which doth enrich Thy great abode?
My virgin-thoughts in childhood were
Full of content,
And innocent,
Without disturbance, free and clear,
Even like the streams of crystal springs,
Where all the curious things
Do from the bottom of the well appear
When no filth or mud is there.


For so when first I in the summer-fields
Saw golden corn
The earth adorn
(This day that sight its pleasure yields),
No rubies could more take mine eye;
Nor pearls of price,
By man's device
Set in enamel'd gold most curiously,
More costly seem to me,
How rich so e'er they be
By men esteem'd; nor could these more be mine
That on my finger shine.


The skies above so sweetly then did smile,
Their curtains spread
Above my head
And with its height mine eye beguile;
So lovely did the distant green
That fring'd the field
Appear, and yield
Such pleasant prospects to be seen
From neighbouring hills; no precious stone,
Or crown, or royal throne,
Which do bedeck the richest Indian lord,
Could such delight afford.


The sun, that gilded all the bordering woods,
Shone from the sky
To beautify
My earthly and my heavenly goods;
Exalted in his throne on high,
He shed his beams
In golden streams
That did illustrate all the sky;
Those floods of light which he displays,
Did fill the glittering ways,
While that unsufferable piercing eye
The ground did glorify.


The choicest colours, yellow, green, and blue,
Did on this court
In comely sort
A mix'd variety bestrew;
Like gold with emeralds between;
As if my God
From His abode
By these intended to be seen.
And so He was: I Him descried
In's works, the surest guide
Dame Nature yields; His love, His life doth there
For evermore appear.


No house nor holder in this world did I
Observe to be;
What I did see
Seem'd all mine own: wherein did lie
A mine, a garden, of delights;
Pearls were but stones;
And great kings' thrones,
Compared with such benefits,
But empty chairs; a crown, a toy
Scarce apt to please a boy.
All other are but petty trifling shows,
To that which God bestows.


A royal crown, inlaid with precious stones,
Did less surprise
The infant eyes
Of many other little ones,
Than the great beauties of this frame,
Made for my sake,
Mine eyes did take,
Which I divine, and mine, do name.
Surprising joys beyond all price
Compos'd a Paradise,
Which did my soul to love my God inflame,
And ever will the same.

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