Home > Bible Stories and Religious Classics

<< Previous Story | Home | Next Story >>

The Search for Peace

Sweet Peace, where dost thou dwell? I humbly crave,
    Let me once know.
  I sought thee in a secret cave,
    And ask'd, if Peace were there?
A hollow wind did seem to answer, "No:--
    Go seek elsewhere."

I did; and going did a rainbow note: Surely, thought I, This is the lace of Peace's coat: I will search out the matter. But while I look'd, the clouds immediately Did break and scatter.

Then went I to a garden, and did spy A gallant flower, The Crown Imperial: Sure, said I, Peace at the root must dwell. But when I digg'd, I saw a worm devour What show'd so well.

At length I met a reverend good old man: Whom when for Peace I did demand, he thus began: "There was a Prince of old At Salem dwelt, who lived with good increase Of flock and fold.

"He sweetly lived; yet sweetness did not save His life from foes. But after death, out of his grave There sprang twelve stalks of wheat: Which many wondering at, got some of those To plant and set.

"It prosper'd strangely, and did soon disperse Through all the earth: For they that taste it do rehearse, That virtue lies therein; A secret virtue, bringing peace and mirth By flight of sin.

"Take of this grain, which in my garden grows, And grows for you; Make bread of it:--and that repose And peace, which everywhere With so much earnestness you do pursue, Is only there."

_--G. Herbert_

<< Previous Story | Home | Next Story >>