Delight In God Only
I love (and have some cause to love) the earth;
She is my Maker's creature, therefore good:
She is my mother, for she gave me birth;
She is my tender nurse; she gives me food;
But what's a creature, Lord, compared with Thee?
Or what's my mother, or my nurse to me?
I love the air; her dainty fruits refresh
My drooping soul, and to new sweets invite me;
Her shrill-mouth'd choirs sustain me with their flesh.
And with their polyphonian notes delight me:
But what's the air, or all the sweets that she
Can bless my soul withal, compared to Thee?
I love the sea; she is my fellow-creature,
My careful purveyor; she provides me store;
She walls me round; she makes my diet greater;
She wafts my treasure from a foreign shore:
But, Lord of oceans, when compared with Thee,
What is the ocean, or her wealth to me?
To heaven's high city I direct my journey,
Whose spangled suburbs entertain mine eye;
Mine eye, by contemplation's great attorney,
Transcends the crystal pavement of the sky.
But what is heaven, great God, compared to Thee?
Without Thy presence, heaven's no heaven to me.
Without Thy presence, earth gives no reflection:
Without Thy presence, sea affords no treasure;
Without Thy presence, air's a rank infection;
Without Thy presence, heaven itself no pleasure:
If not possess'd, if not enjoyed in Thee,
What's earth, or sea, or air, or heaven to me?
The highest honours that the world can boast,
Are subjects far too low for my desire;
Its brightest gleams of glory are, at most,
But dying sparkles of Thy living fire:
The brightest flames that earth can kindle, be
But nightly glowworms, if compared to Thee.
Without Thy presence, wealth is bags of cares;
Wisdom, but folly; joy, disquiet, sadness;
Friendship is treason, and delights are snares;
Pleasures, but pain; and mirth, but pleasing madness:
Without Thee, Lord, things be not what they be,
Nor have their being when compared with Thee.
In having all things, and not Thee, what have I?
Not having Thee, what have my labours got?
Let me enjoy but Thee, what have my labours got?
And having Thee alone, what have I not?
I wish nor sea nor land; nor would I be
Possess'd of heaven, heaven unpossess'd of Thee.
Francis Quarles's Other Poems
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Comments about this poem (Delight In God Only by Francis Quarles )
Still I Rise
The Road Not Taken
If You Forget Me
Edgar Allan Poe
I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
A Dream Within A Dream
Edgar Allan Poe
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(13 September 1916 – 23 November 1990)
(28 November 1757 – 12 August 1827)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(1886 - 1967)
(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994)
(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616)
- Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
- Daffodils, William Wordsworth
- If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- If, Rudyard Kipling
- Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
- Phenomenal Woman, Maya Angelou
- I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou
- Television, Roald Dahl
- A Dream Within A Dream, Edgar Allan Poe