Mark you the floor? that square and speckled stone,
Which looks so firm and strong,
And th' other black and grave, wherewith each one
Is checkered all along,
The gentle rising, which on either hand
Leads to the Choir above,
But the sweet cement, which in one sure band
Ties the whole frame, is Love
Hither sometimes Sin steals, and stains
The marble's neat and curious veins:
But all is cleansed when the marble weeps.
Sometimes Death, puffing at the door,
Blows all the dust about the floor:
But while he thinks to spoil the room, he sweeps.
Blessed be the Architect, whose art
Could build so strong in a weak heart -- By George Herbert
Lord, how can man preach thy eternal word?
He is a brittle crazy glass;
Yet in thy temple thou dost him afford
This glorious and transcendent place,
To be a window, through thy grace.
But when thou dost anneal in glass thy story,
Making thy life to shine within
The holy preachers, then the light and glory
More reverend grows, and more doth win;
Which else shows waterish, bleak, and thin.
Doctrine and life, colors and light, in one
When they combine and mingle, bring
A strong regard and awe; but speech alone
Doth vanish like a flaring thing,
And in the ear, not conscience, ring. -- By George Herbert