Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, DRESSING, by HENRY VAUGHAN

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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

DRESSING, by             Poet's Biography
First Line: O thou that lovest a pure and whitened soul
Last Line: If saints and angels fall down, much more thou.
Alternate Author Name(s): Silurist

O thou that lovest a pure and whitened soul!
That feed'st among the lilies, till the day
Break, and the shadows flee; touch with one coal
My frozen heart; and with thy secret key

Open my desolate rooms; my gloomy breast
With thy clear fire refine, burning to dust
These dark confusions, that within me nest,
And soil thy Temple with a sinful rust.

Thou holy, harmless, undefiled high-priest!
The perfect, full oblation for all sin,
Whose glorious conquest nothing can resist,
But even in babes dost triumph still and win;

Give to thy wretched one
Thy mystical Communion,
That, absent, he may see,
Live, die, and rise with thee;
Let him so follow here, that in the end
He may take thee, as thou dost him intend.
Give him thy private seal,
Earnest, and sign; thy gifts so deal
That these forerunners here
May make the future clear;
Whatever thou dost bid, let faith make good,
Bread for thy body, and wine for thy blood.
Give him (with pity) love,
Two flowers that grew with thee above;
Love that shall not admit
Anger for one short fit,
And pity of such a divine extent
That may thy members, more than mine, resent.

Give me, my God! thy grace,
The beams and brightness of thy face,
That never like a beast
I take thy sacred feast,
Or the dread mysteries of thy blest blood
Use, with like custom, as my kitchen food.
Some sit to thee, and eat
Thy body as their common meat,
O let not me do so!
Poor dust should lie still low,
Then kneel my soul and body; kneel and bow;
If Saints and Angels fall down, much more thou.

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