Verse > Anthologies > T. H. Ward, ed. > The English Poets > Vol. I. Chaucer to Donne
Thomas Humphry Ward, ed.  The English Poets.  1880–1918.
Vol. I. Early Poetry: Chaucer to Donne
Extracts from Caelica: Sonnet: ‘Sion lies waste, and Thy Jerusalem’
By Fulke Greville, Lord Brooke (1554–1628)
[Sonnet CX.]

SION lies waste, and Thy Jerusalem,
O Lord, is fall’n to utter desolation;
Against Thy prophets and Thy holy men,
There sin hath wrought a fatal combination;
  Profan’d Thy name, Thy worship overthrown,        5
  And made Thee, living Lord, a God unknown.
Thy powerful laws, Thy wonders of creation,
Thy word incarnate, glorious heaven, dark hell,
Lie shadowed under man’s degeneration;
Thy Christ still crucified for doing well;        10
  Impiety, O Lord, sits on Thy throne,
  Which makes Thee living Lord, a God unknown.
Man’s superstition hath Thy truth entombed,
His atheism again her pomps defaceth;
That sensual, insatiable vast womb,        15
Of thy seen Church, Thy unseen Church disgraceth;
  There lives no truth with them that seem Thine own,
  Which makes Thee, living Lord, a God unknown.
Yet unto Thee, Lord—mirror of transgression—
We who for earthly idols have forsaken,        20
Thy heavenly image—sinless, pure impression—
And so in nets of vanity lie taken,
  All desolate implore that to Thine own,
  Lord, Thou no longer live a God unknown.
Yea, Lord, let Israel’s plagues not be eternal,        25
Nor sin for ever cloud Thy sacred mountains,
Nor with false flames spiritual but infernal,
Dry up Thy Mercy’s ever springing fountains:
  Rather, sweet Jesus, fill up time and come,
  To yield to sin her everlasting doom.        30

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