Henry Vaughan

Here you will find the Poem Regeneration of poet Henry Vaughan



Award, and still in bonds, one day 
I stole abroad, 
It was high-spring, and all the way 
Primros'd, and hung with shade; 
Yet, was it frost within, 
And surly winds 
Blasted my infant buds, and sin 
Like clouds eclips'd my mind.


Storm'd thus; I straight perceiv'd my spring 
Mere stage, and show, 
My walk a monstrous, mountain's thing 
Rough-cast with rocks, and snow; 
And as a pilgrim's eye 
Far from relief, 
Measures the melancholy sky 
Then drops, and rains for grief,


So sigh'd I upwards still, at last 
'Twixt steps, and falls 
I reach'd the pinnacle, where plac'd 
I found a pair of scales, 
I took them up and laid 
In th'one late pains, 
The other smoke, and pleasures weigh'd 
But prov'd the heavier grains;


With that, some cried, Away; straight I 
Obey'd, and led 
Full east, a fair, fresh field could spy 
Some call'd it Jacob's Bed; 
A virgin-soil, which no 
Rude feet ere trod, 
Where (since he slept there,) only go 
Prophets, and friends of God.


Here, I repos'd; but scarce well set, 
A grove descried 
Of stately height, whose branches met 
And mixed on every side; 
I entered, and once in 
(Amaz'd to see't,) 
Found all was chang'd, and a new spring 
Did all my senses greet;


The unthrift sun shot vital gold 
A thousand pieces, 
And heaven its azure did unfold 
Checker'd with snowy fleeces, 
The air was all in spice 
And every bush 
A garland wore; thus fed my eyes 
But all the ear lay hush.


Only a little fountain lent 
Some use for ears, 
And on the dumb shades language spent 
The music of her tears; 
I drew her near, and found 
The cistern full 
Of diverse stones, some bright, and round 
Others ill'shap'd, and dull.


The first (pray mark,) as quick as light 
Danc'd through the flood, 
But, th'last more heavy than the night 
Nail'd to the center stood; 
I wonder'd much, but tir'd 
At last with thought, 
My restless eye that still desir'd 
As strange an object brought;


It was a bank of flowers, where I descried 
(Though 'twas mid'day,) 
Some fast asleep, others broad-eyed 
And taking in the ray, 
Here musing long, I heard 
A rushing wind 
Which still increas'd, but whence it stirr'd 
No where I could not find;


I turn'd me round, and to each shade 
Dispatch'd an eye, 
To see, if any leaf had made 
Least motion, or reply, 
But while I listening sought 
My mind to ease 
By knowing, where 'twas, or where not, 
It whispered: Where I please. 
Lord, then said I, On me one breath, 
And let me die before my death!