Verse > Anthologies > The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse > 22. The Pulley
Nicholson & Lee, eds.  The Oxford Book of English Mystical Verse. 1917.
22. The Pulley
By George Herbert  (1593–1633)
    WHEN God at first made man,
    Having a glasse of blessings standing by
  Let us,’ said He, ‘poure on him all we can;
Let the world’s riches, which dispersed lie,
    Contract into a span.’        5
    So strength first made a way;
Then beautie flow’d, then wisdome, honour, pleasure;
When almost all was out, God made a stay,
Perceiving that, alone of all His treasure,
  Rest in the bottome lay.       10
  ‘For if I should,’ said He,
‘Bestow this jewell also on My creature,
He would adore My gifts in stead of Me,
And rest in Nature, not the God of Nature:
  So both should losers be.       15
    ‘Yet let him keep the rest,
But keep them with repining restlesnesse;
Let him be rich and wearie, that at least,
If goodnesse leade him not, yet wearinesse
  May tosse him to My breast.’       20


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