April 1, 2010

From Francis Quarles, onetime secretary to James Ussher:

Those hands, which Heav’n like to a curten spred,
Are spred upon the Crosse: those hands which did
Consolidate the metals in the ground,
One of those metals gave those hands the wound:
See his hands spred, as if he meant to grace
His Executioners with his last embrace,
Nay, all the world: for if his fist can hold
The winds, his armes can all the world enfold.
See there Longinus with his ruder speare
Peirce his Diviner side, from whence appeare
Water and blood, whose white and red present
Th’ admitting and confirming Sacrament.
See here his feet nail’d to the Crosse, which done
Those feet with streames of purple did so runne,
That in one sense it might be understood
Our Saviours feet were swift to shed blood:
His hands and feet thus forced to obey
The cruell nailes command; may we not say
The Starre that out of Iacob shin’d so farre
Was then, or never made a fixed Starre?

(From Divine Poems on the Passion of the Christ, 1647)


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