About Son of Man

Sunday, November 27, 2005

God's Grandeur

God's Grandeur
Gerard Manley Hopkins

The world is charged with the gradeur of God.
It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;
It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil
Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod?
Generations have trod, have trod, have trod;
And all is seared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil;
and wears man's smudge and shares man's smell: the soil
Is bare now, nor can foot feel, being shod.

And, for all this, nature is never spent;
There lives the dearest freshness deep down things;
and through the last lights off the black West went
oh, morning, at the brown brink eastward, springs-
Because the Holy Ghost over the bent
World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings.

This poem reminds me of Psalm 19. "The heavens declare God's 'grandeur'." Dispite the failure of man to "reck his rod', or in other words, reckon him worthy, or heed his authority, His purpose will stand (Isaiah 46:9-10) . The wickedness of man; their smear, smudge, and their smell cannot quench the "dear freshness" in what he has made that bears his witness. The last two lines could refer to the brooding like that of a dove over its nest. I like that because the spirit was compared to a dove in the gospels. It also brings to mind the action of the spirit before the creation, hovering and brooding over the waters. Praise God for his patience with a world that in its darkness did not comprehend the light. Praise him for loving his enemies.