Robert Southwell

(1561 - 1595 / England)

The Burning Babe


AS I in hoary winter's night
   Stood shivering in the snow,
Surprised I was with sudden heat
   Which made my heart to glow;
And lifting up a fearful eye
   To view what fire was near,
A pretty babe all burning bright
   Did in the air appear;
Who, scorched with excessive heat,
   Such floods of tears did shed,
As though His floods should quench His flames,
   Which with His tears were bred:
'Alas!' quoth He, 'but newly born
   In fiery heats I fry,
Yet none approach to warm their hearts
   Or feel my fire but I!
'My faultless breast the furnace is;
   The fuel, wounding thorns;
Love is the fire, and sighs the smoke;
   The ashes, shames and scorns;
The fuel Justice layeth on,
   And Mercy blows the coals,
The metal in this furnace wrought
   Are men's defiled souls:
For which, as now on fire I am
   To work them to their good,
So will I melt into a bath,
   To wash them in my blood.'
With this He vanish'd out of sight
   And swiftly shrunk away,
And straight I called unto mind
   That it was Christmas Day.

Submitted: Saturday, January 04, 2003

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

What do you think this poem is about?



Read poems about / on: fire, christmas, justice, winter, snow, work, night

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (The Burning Babe by Robert Southwell )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

PoemHunter.com Updates

Poem of the Day

poet John Clare

I love to see the old heath's withered brake
Mingle its crimpled leaves with furze and ling,
While the old heron from the lonely lake
Starts slow and flaps its melancholy wing,
...... Read complete »

 

Modern Poem

poet Grace Paley

 

Trending Poems

  1. Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
  2. Daffodils, William Wordsworth
  3. All the World's a Stage, William Shakespeare
  4. If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
  5. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  6. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  7. Emmonsail's Heath in Winter, John Clare
  8. A Fairy Song, William Shakespeare
  9. Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
  10. If, Rudyard Kipling

Trending Poets

[Hata Bildir]