Rate this poem:(0.00 / 0 votes)

To What Serves Mortal Beauty?

Gerard Manley Hopkins 1844 (Stratford, London) – 1889 (Dublin)



To what serves mortal beauty ' —dangerous; does set danc-
ing blood—the O-seal-that-so ' feature, flung prouder form
Than Purcell tune lets tread to? ' See: it does this: keeps warm
Men’s wits to the things that are; ' what good means—where a glance
Master more may than gaze, ' gaze out of countenance.
Those lovely lads once, wet-fresh ' windfalls of war’s storm,
How then should Gregory, a father, ' have gleanèd else from swarm-
ed Rome? But God to a nation ' dealt that day’s dear chance.
To man, that needs would worship ' block or barren stone,
Our law says: Love what are ' love’s worthiest, were all known;
World’s loveliest—men’s selves. Self ' flashes off frame and face.
What do then? how meet beauty? ' Merely meet it; own,
Home at heart, heaven’s sweet gift; ' then leave, let that alone.
Yea, wish that though, wish all, ' God’s better beauty, grace.

Font size:
 

Submitted on May 13, 2011

43 sec read
141 Views

Discuss this Gerard Manley Hopkins poem with the community:

0 Comments

    Translation

    Find a translation for this poem in other languages:

    Select another language:

    • - Select -
    • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
    • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
    • Español (Spanish)
    • Esperanto (Esperanto)
    • 日本語 (Japanese)
    • Português (Portuguese)
    • Deutsch (German)
    • العربية (Arabic)
    • Français (French)
    • Русский (Russian)
    • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
    • 한국어 (Korean)
    • עברית (Hebrew)
    • Gaeilge (Irish)
    • Українська (Ukrainian)
    • اردو (Urdu)
    • Magyar (Hungarian)
    • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
    • Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Italiano (Italian)
    • தமிழ் (Tamil)
    • Türkçe (Turkish)
    • తెలుగు (Telugu)
    • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
    • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
    • Čeština (Czech)
    • Polski (Polish)
    • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Românește (Romanian)
    • Nederlands (Dutch)
    • Ελληνικά (Greek)
    • Latinum (Latin)
    • Svenska (Swedish)
    • Dansk (Danish)
    • Suomi (Finnish)
    • فارسی (Persian)
    • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
    • հայերեն (Armenian)
    • Norsk (Norwegian)
    • English (English)

    Citation

    Use the citation below to add this poem to your bibliography:

    Style:MLAChicagoAPA

    "To What Serves Mortal Beauty?" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 7 Aug. 2022. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/15918/to-what-serves-mortal-beauty%3F>.

    Become a member!

    Join our community of poets and poetry lovers to share your work and offer feedback and encouragement to writers all over the world!

    August 2022

    Poetry Contest

    Enter our monthly contest for the chance to win cash prizes and gain recognition for your talent.
    24
    days
    5
    hours
    41
    minutes

    Browse Poetry.com

    Quiz

    Are you a poetry master?

    »
    Lewis Carroll wrote: "You are old father William, the young man said..."
    • A. "and your eyes have become less bright"
    • B. "and you're going to die tonight"
    • C. "and you seem to have lost your sight"
    • D. "and your hair has become very white"