English poetry

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Thou Art Indeed Just, Lord, If I Contend

Thou Art Indeed Just, Lord, If I Contend

Justus quidem tu es, Domine, si disputem tecum:
Verumtamen justa loquar ad te:
Quare via impiorum prosperatur? &c.

Thou art indeed just, Lord, if I contend
With thee; but, sir, so what I plead is just.
Why do sinners’ ways prosper? and why must
Disappointment all I endeavour end?

Wert thou my enemy, O thou my friend,
How wouldst thou worse, I wonder, than thou dost
Defeat, thwart me? Oh, the sots and thralls of lust
Do in spare hours more thrive than I that spend,
Sir, life upon thy cause. See, banks and brakes
Now leavèd how thick! lacèd they are again
With fretty chervil, look, and fresh wind shakes
Them; birds build but not I build; no, but strain,
Time’s eunuch, and not breed one work that wakes.
Mine, O thou lord of life, send my roots rain.



Poem Thou Art Indeed Just, Lord, If I Contend - Gerard Manley Hopkins