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Poem by Thomas Traherne
Men are not wise in their Tru Interest, Nor in the Worth of what they long possest: They know no more what is their Own Than they the Valu of't have known. They pine in Misery, Complain of Poverty, Reap not where they hav sown, Griev for Felicity, Blaspheme the Deity; And all becaus they are not blest With Eys to see the Worth of Things: For did they know their Reall Interest, No doubt they'd all be Kings. There's not a Man but covets and desires A Kingdom, yea a World; nay, he aspires To all the Regions he can spy Beyond the Hev'ns Infinity: The World too little is To be his Sphere of Bliss; Eternity must be The Object of his View And his Possession too; Or els Infinity's a Dream That quickly fades away; He lovs All Treasures; but he hates a failing Stream That dries up as it movs. Can Fancy make a Greater King than God? Can Man within his Soveraign's Abode Be dearer to himself than He That is the Angels Deity? Man is as wel belov'd As they, if he improv'd His Talent as we see They do; and may as well In Blessedness excell. But Man hath lost the ancient Way, That Road is grown into Decay; Brambles shut up the Path, and Briars tear Those few that pass by there. They think no Realms nor Kingdoms theirs, No Lands nor Houses, that have other Heirs. But native Sense taught me more Wit, The World did too, I may admit: As soon as I was born It did my Soul adorn, And was a Benefit That round about me lay; And yet without Delay 'Twas seated quickly in my Mind, Its Uses also I yet find Mine own: for God, that All things would impart, Center'd it in my Heart. The World set in Man's Heart, and yet not His! Why, all the Compass of this great Abyss, Th' united Service and Delight, Its Beauty that attracts the Sight, That Goodness which I find, Doth gratify my Mind; The common Air and Light That shines, doth me a Pleasure And surely is my Treasure: Of it I am th' inclusive Sphere, It doth entire in me appear As well as I in it: It givs me Room, Yet lies within my Womb.
Thomas Traherne's other poems:
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