Pastor's Easter Greeting

George Herbert

Christ is Risen from the dead!

The Word speaks dead Words to life!

One of my favorite poets is Anglican clergyman George Herbert (1593-1633). A genius of English poetry and one of the most brilliant and talented men of his generation (the same generation as Shakespeare), he chose the life of a simple country priest (I can relate!) to a life of influence with the Court of St. James.

His poetry is of such high quality that despite his Anglican affiliation many of his poems are to be found in the English translation of the Roman Breviary. 

One of Herbert's many innovations is the Shape Poem. The verses are arranged to form some object or to evoke an idea. Here is one poem entitled Easter Wings. You can see how the two stanzas evoke the winged Cherubim on the Mercy Seat in the Holy of Holes.

In the poem's ending verse -

"For, if I imp my wing on thine, Affliction shall advance the flight in me."

- Herbert is praying to the Lord, saying:

"My Cross, dearest God, is Your Resurrection."


Screen Shot 2019 06 18 At 5.52.12 Pm 346x72

Easter Wings by George Herbert

Lord, who createdst man in wealth and store,

Though foolishly he lost the same,

Decaying more and more,

Till he became

Most poor:

With thee

O let me rise

As larks, harmoniously,

And sing this day thy victories:

Then shall the fall further the flight in me.


My tender age in sorrow did begin

And still with sicknesses and shame.

Thou didst so punish sin,

That I became

Most thin.

With thee

Let me combine,

And feel this day thy victory

For, if I imp my wing on thine,

Affliction shall advance the flight in me.


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