January 1, 2015

Poem: The Flower


The Flower is a poem by George Herbert (1593–1633).  It was published posthumously in 1633 as part of his collection, The Temple. The version of The Flower included in the Poems for Advent and Christmas Appendix of the Divine Office (1974) is an abridgement of Herbert's original 7 stanza poem.

THE FLOWER by George Herbert, 1633

Who would have thought my shrivel’d heart
Could have recover’d greenness? It was gone
Quite under ground; as flowers depart
To see their mother-root, when they have blown;
Where they together
All the hard weather,
Dead to the world, keep house unknown.

These are thy wonders, Lord of power,
Killing and quickning, bringing down to hell
And up to heaven in an houre;
Making a chiming of a passing-bell,
We say amiss,
This or that is:
Thy word is all, if we could spell.

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