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The Pulley

from The Temple (1633)

George Herbert (1593-1633)

          WHEN God at first made man, 
Having a glasse of blessings standing by ; 
Let us (said he) poure on him all we can : 
Let the worlds riches, which dispersed lie, 
          Contract into a span. 

          So strength first made a way ; 
Then beautie flow’d, then wisdome, honour, pleasure : 
When almost all was out, God made a stay, 
Perceiving that alone, of all his treasure, 
          Rest in the bottome lay. 

          For if I should (said he) 
Bestow this jewell also on my creature, 
He would adore my gifts in stead of me, 
And rest in Nature, not the God of Nature : 
          So both should losers be. 

          Yet let him keep the rest, 
But keep them with repining restlesnesse : 
Let him be rich and wearie, that at least, 
If goodnesse leade him not, yet wearinesse 
          May tosse him to my breast.