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Poem by Thomas Traherne
News from a foreign country came, As if my treasures and my joys lay there; So much it did my heart inflame, ’Twas wont to call my soul into mine ear; Which thither went to meet Th’ approaching sweet, And on the threshold stood To entertain the secret good; It hover’d there As if ’twould leave mine ear, And was so eager to embrace Th’ expected tidings as they came, That it could change its dwelling place To meet the voice of fame. As if new tidings were the things Which did comprise my wished unknown treasure, Or else did bear them on their wings, With so much joy they came, with so much pleasure, My soul stood at the gate To recreate Itself with bliss, and woo Its speedier approach; a fuller view It fain would take, Yet journeys back would make Unto my heart, as if ’twould fain Go out to meet, yet stay within, Fitting a place to entertain And bring the tidings in. What sacred instinct did inspire My soul in childhood with an hope so strong? What secret force mov’d my desire T’ expect my joys beyond the seas, so young? Felicity I knew Was out of view; And being left alone, I thought all happiness was gone From earth; for this I long’d for absent bliss, Deeming that sure beyond the seas, Or else in something near at hand Which I knew not, since nought did please I knew, my bliss did stand. But little did the infant dream That all the treasures of the world were by, And that himself was so the cream And crown of all which round about did lie. Yet thus it was! The gem, The diadem, The ring enclosing all That stood upon this earthen ball; The heav’nly eye, Much wider than the sky, Wherein they all included were; The love, the soul, that was the king Made to possess them, did appear A very little thing.
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