Saul – Chapter 18

“I believe it! ‘Tis Thou, God, that givest, ’tis I who receive:

In the first is the last, in thy will is my power to believe.

All ‘s one gift: thou canst grant it moreover, as prompt to my prayer

As I breathe out this breath, as I open these arms to the air.

From thy will stream the worlds, life and nature, thy dread Sabaoth:

I will?–the mere atoms despise me! Why am I not loth

To look that, even that in the face too? Why is it I dare

Think but lightly of such impuissance? What stops my despair?

This;–’tis not what man Does which exalts him, but what man Would do!

See the King–I would help him but cannot, the wishes fall through.

Could I wrestle to raise him from sorrow, grow poor to enrich,

To fill up his life, starve my own out, I would–knowing which,

I know that my service is perfect. Oh, speak through me now!

Would I suffer for him that I love? So wouldst thou–so wilt thou!

So shall crown thee the topmost, ineffablest, uttermost crown–

And thy love fill infinitude wholly, nor leave up nor down

One spot for the creature to stand in! It is by no breath,

Turn of eye, wave of hand, that salvation joins issue with death!

As thy Love is discovered almighty, almighty be proved

Thy power, that exists with and for it, of being Beloved!

He who did most, shall bear most; the strongest shall stand the most weak.

‘Tis the weakness in strength, that I cry for! my flesh, that I seek

In the Godhead! I seek and I find it. O Saul, it shall be

A Face like my face that receives thee; a Man like to me,

Thou shalt love and be loved by, forever: a Hand like this hand

Shall throw open the gates of new life to thee! See the Christ stand!”

Robert Browning

Robert Browning Poems

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Robert Browning

Robert Browning Poetry

British Poets