Tag Archives: Hopkins

Glory be to God….

GLORY be to God for dappled things—
For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow;
For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim;
Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches’ wings;
Landscape plotted and pieced—fold, fallow, and plough;
And áll trádes, their gear and tackle and trim.

All things counter, original, spare, strange;
Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?)
With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim;
He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change:
Praise him.

—-Gerard Manley Hopkins

 

 

I love Hopkins. He has a poem for every mood I’m in. This is the one now.

Advertisements

GLORY be to God for dappled things—
For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow;
For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim;
Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches’ wings;
Landscape plotted and pieced—fold, fallow, and plough;
And áll trádes, their gear and tackle and trim.

All things counter, original, spare, strange;
Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?)
With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim;
He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change:
Praise him.

–Gerard Hopkins

 

(This captures, the specific dearness of things and people in all their individuality. And there is the ultimate and unchanging God, behind all that is small and dear and quirky and itself. Our God is the God of all those Platonic forms…and He is also the Incarnate God, of everything dear and specific. A great wonder. )

My all time favorite poem

Hopkins is comparing our lives to a journey, as we wander through a dark marsh, each carrying our own lantern. As we walk, we meet others along the way, and there is friendship. But then they walk ahead of us, and we lose them:

SOMETIMES a lantern moves along the night,
That interests our eyes. And who goes there?
I think; where from and bound, I wonder, where,
With, all down darkness wide, his wading light?

Men go by me whom either beauty bright
In mould or mind or what not else makes rare:
They rain against our much-thick and marsh air
Rich beams, till death or distance buys them quite.

Death or distance soon consumes them: wind
What most I may eye after, be in at the end
I cannot, and out of sight is out of mind.

Christ minds: Christ’s interest, what to avow or amend
There, éyes them, heart wánts, care haúnts, foot fóllows kínd,
Their ránsom, théir rescue, ánd first, fást, last friénd.

The point of all love is the good of the other person. For them to be fully and beautifully their true self, in all their quirks and dearness, a kind of consummation of their true being, in the heart of God. It is not about us and them, it is about them and God. So it is OK that we lose people on this earth. They are not meant for us. They are meant for God. He will keep all the promises we broke, and He will fulfill all that is lost. They shall be happy in God, truly and fully themself, with joy and holiness. That is all that matters.

Bright Wings

God, Nature, People = beautiful. Pain, yes. And yet….bright wings!

Someone else says it much better than me:

THE WORLD is charged with the grandeur of God.
It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;
It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil
Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod?
Generations have trod, have trod, have trod;
And all is seared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil;
And wears man’s smudge and shares man’s smell: the soil
Is bare now, nor can foot feel, being shod.

And for all this, nature is never spent;
There lives the dearest freshness deep down things;
And though the last lights off the black West went
Oh, morning, at the brown brink eastward, springs—
Because the Holy Ghost over the bent
World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings.