O my chief good,
How shall I measure out Thy bloud?
How shall I count what Thee befell,
And each grief tell?
Shall I Thy woes
Number according to Thy foes?
Or, since one starre show'd Thy first breath,
Shall all Thy death?
Or shall each leaf
Which falls in Autumne score a grief?
Or cannot leaves, but fruit, be signe
Of the True Vine?
Then let each hour
Of my whole life once grief devoure,
That Thy distresse through all may runne,
And be my sunne.
Or rather let
My sev'rall sinnes their sorrows get,
That as each beast his cure doth know,
Each sinne may so.
Since bloud is fittest, Lord, to write
Thy sorrows in and bloudie fight,
My heart hat store, write there, where in
One box doth lie both ink and sinne:
That when Sinne spies so many foes,
Thy whips, Thy nails, Thy wounds, Thy woes,
All come to lodge there, Sinne may say,
'No room for me', and flie away.
Sinne being gone, O, fill the place,
And keep possession with Thy grace;
Lest sinne take courage and return,
And all the writings blot or burn.
-- George Herbert (1593-1633)
"Good Friday" from The Temple