Verse > Anthologies > Henry Charles Beeching, ed. > Lyra Sacra
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Henry Charles Beeching, ed. (1859–1919).  Lyra Sacra: A Book of Religious Verse.  1903.
 
From “The Church Porch”: Conduct
By George Herbert (1593–1633)
 
WHEN thou dost purpose aught, within thy power,
Be sure to do it, though it be but small:
Constancy knits the bones, and makes us stour 1
When wanton pleasures beckon us to thrall.
  Who breaks his own bond, forfeiteth himself:        5
  What nature made a ship, he makes a shelf.
 
Pitch thy behaviour low, thy projects high;
So shalt thou humble and magnanimous be:
Sink not in spirit: who aimeth at the sky,
Shoots higher much than he that means a tree.        10
  A grain of glory mixed with humbleness
  Cures both a fever and lethargickness.
 
By all means use sometimes to be alone.
Salute thyself: see what thy soul doth wear.
Dare to look in thy chest, for ’tis thine own,        15
And tumble up and down what thou find’st there.
  Who cannot rest till he good fellows find,
  He bleaks up house, turns out of doors his mind.
 
Note 1. Sturdy. [back]
 
 
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