Verse > William Wordsworth > Complete Poetical Works
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ECCLESIASTICAL SONNETS

IN SERIES, 1821-22.

XIX. PRIMITIVE SAXON CLERGY

          HOW beautiful your presence, how benign,
          Servants of God! who not a thought will share
          With the vain world; who, outwardly as bare
          As winter trees, yield no fallacious sign
          That the firm soul is clothed with fruit divine!
          Such Priest, when service worthy of his care
          Has called him forth to breathe the common air,
          Might seem a saintly Image from its shrine
          Descended:--happy are the eyes that meet
          The Apparition; evil thoughts are stayed                    10
          At his approach, and low-bowed necks entreat
          A benediction from his voice or hand;
          Whence grace, through which the heart can understand,
          And vows, that bind the will, in silence made.


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