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The Timber

Henry Vaughan 1621 (Brecknockshire) – 1695



Sure thou didst flourish once! and many springs,
Many bright mornings, much dew, many showers,
Pass'd o'er thy head; many light hearts and wings,
Which now are dead, lodg'd in thy living bowers.

And still a new succession sings and flies;
Fresh groves grow up, and their green branches shoot
Towards the old and still enduring skies,
While the low violet thrives at their root.

But thou beneath the sad and heavy line
Of death, doth waste all senseless, cold, and dark;
Where not so much as dreams of light may shine,
Nor any thought of greenness, leaf, or bark.

And yet—as if some deep hate and dissent,
Bred in thy growth betwixt high winds and thee,
Were still alive—thou dost great storms resent
Before they come, and know'st how near they be.

Else all at rest thou liest, and the fierce breath
Of tempests can no more disturb thy ease;
But this thy strange resentment after death
Means only those who broke—in life—thy peace.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

51 sec read
118

Quick analysis:

Scheme ABAB CDCD EFEF GHGH IXIX
Closest metre Iambic pentameter
Characters 945
Words 167
Stanzas 5
Stanza Lengths 4, 4, 4, 4, 4

Henry Vaughan

Henry Vaughan was a Welsh author, physician and metaphysical poet. Vaughan and his twin brother, the hermetic philosopher and alchemist Thomas Vaughan, were the sons of Thomas Vaughan and his wife Denise of 'Trenewydd', Newton, in Brecknockshire, Wales. Their grandfather, William, was the owner of Tretower Court. Vaughan spent most of his life in the village of Llansantffraed, near Brecon, where he is also buried. more…

All Henry Vaughan poems | Henry Vaughan Books

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    "The Timber" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 27 Jan. 2023. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/18461/the-timber>.

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