Karl's Favourite Pomes

[As Kingfishers Catch Fire,
Dragonflies Draw Flame]

Gerard Manly Hopkins

As kingfishers catch fire, dragonflies draw flame;
    As tumbled over rim in roundy wells
    Stones ring; like each tucked string tells, each hung bell's
Bow swung finds tongue to ring out broad its name;
Each mortal thing does one thing and the same:
    Deals out that being indoors each one dwells;
    Selves - goes itself; myself it speaks and spells,
Crying What I do is me: for that I came.

I say more: the just man justices;
    Keeps gráce: thát keeps all his goings graces;
Acts in God's eye what in God's eye he is-
    Chríst. For Christ plays in ten thousand places,
Lovely in limbs, and lovely in eyes not his
    To the Father through the features of men's faces.

My comment

Ironic that GMH was for many years prevented by his Order from writing poetry.

I would have stopped after the first verse, but will anyone be reading my poetry 110 years from now? -KA.

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Page last updated 9 April 1999