Tuesday, 17 February 2009

A Poem for Today

I've been reading The Jesus Way by Eugene H Peterson and finding it a most wonderful book, there will be more posts on the themes from this book soon.

Today I came across a poem Peterson quotes of George Herbert, a seventeeth century priest. The poem is called 'Aaron' and is a study of priesthood. Peterson uses the poem to illustrate the anonymity of a genuine priest, an 'anonymity which suggests their authenticity.' (page 226)

I hope you find this poem helpful and challenging.

Aaron - by George Herbert

Holines on the Head
Light and perfections on the Brest,
Harmonious bells below, raising the Dead,
To lead them unto life and rest,
Thus are true Aaron’s drest.

Profanenes in my Head,
Defects and darkenes in my brest,
A Noise of Passions ringing mee for Dead
Unto a place, wherer there is no rest,
Poore Priest thus am I drest.

Onely another Head
I have, another hart and brest,
Another Musique, making live not dead,
Without whom I could have no rest,
In him I am well drest.

Christ is my only Head
My alone onely hart and Brest,
My onely Musick, striking mee even Dead,
That to the old man I may Rest,
And be in him new Drest.

So Holy in my Head,
Perfect and light in my deare Brest,
My Doctrine tun’d by Christ, (who is not Dead
But lives in mee, while I do Rest)
Come people; Aaron’s Drest.

Italics and spelling as in Peterson.

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