Thomas Montague Traherne

Here you will find the Poem Innocence of poet Thomas Montague Traherne


But that which most I wonder at, which most
 I did esteem my bliss, which most I boast,
 And ever shall enjoy, is that within
 I felt no stain, nor spot of sin.

 No darkness then did overshade,
 But all within was pure and bright,
 No guilt did crush, nor fear invade
 But all my soul was full of light.

 A joyful sense and purity
 Is all I can remember;
 The very night to me was bright,
 'Twas summer in December.

 A serious meditation did employ
 My soul within, which taken up with joy
 Did seem no outward thing to note, but fly
 All objects that do feed the eye.

 While it those very objects did
 Admire, and prize, and praise, and love,
 Which in their glory most are hid,
 Which presence only doth remove.

 Their constant daily presence I
 Rejoicing at, did see;
 And that which takes them from the eye
 Of others, offer'd them to me.

 No inward inclination did I feel
 To avarice or pride: my soul did kneel
 In admiration all the day. No lust, nor strife,
 Polluted then my infant life.

 No fraud nor anger in me mov'd,
 No malice, jealousy, or spite;
 All that I saw I truly lov'd.
 Contentment only and delight

 Were in my soul. O Heav'n! what bliss
 Did I enjoy and feel!
 What powerful delight did this
 Inspire! for this I daily kneel.

 Whether it be that nature is so pure,
 And custom only vicious; or that sure
 God did by miracle the guilt remove,
 And make my soul to feel his love

 So early: or that 'twas one day,
 Wherein this happiness I found;
 Whose strength and brightness so do ray,
 That still it seems me to surround;

 What ere it is, it is a light
 So endless unto me
 That I a world of true delight
 Did then and to this day do see.

 That prospect was the gate of Heav'n, that day
 The ancient light of Eden did convey
 Into my soul: I was an Adam there
 A little Adam in a sphere

 Of joys! O there my ravish'd sense
 Was entertain'd in Paradise,
 And had a sight of innocence
 Which was beyond all bound and price.

 An antepast of Heaven sure!
 I on the earth did reign;
 Within, without me, all was pure;
 I must become a child again.