Friday, April 13, 2007

Donne on Easter Morning

A few days ago, Easter Sunday, I went into my sleeping daughters' room to get a basket of laundry to wash. I entered the room with a slight misquote of John Donne:

Still let them sleep, Lord . . .

This line from the "Holy Sonnets" has a fuller context, of course: the speaker ecstatically calls for the resurrection of the dead, then recants:

But let them sleep, Lord, and me mourn a space,
For, if above all these, my sins abound,
'Tis late to ask abundance of thy grace,
When we are there; here on this lowly ground,
Teach me how to repent; for that's as good
As if thou hadst seal'd my pardon, with thy blood.

Pasted from <>

I would hate to hold back the resurrection of the dead, or any other cosmic event, to fit my own time frame. But in a minor way, I need, day by day, the living to sleep a little longer so that I can consciously renew myself.


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