Old Books with Grace is in the middle of an Advent pilgrimage. Welcome to week two of an Advent series focusing on Advent and Christmas poetry.
Here we sit among an alien people. Even stranger, we recognize that we are unfathomably alien to ourselves, after T.S. Eliot’s “The Journey of the Magi.” As pilgrims we wend our way to death, and via death, life itself in utter fullness. And here the seventeenth-century poet and cleric George Herbert breaks in and proclaims, “Away, despair!” Yes, today in this second installment of the Advent series, we are reading together one of my favorite poets, George Herbert, specifically his beautiful, winsome poem, The Bag. If your alien pilgrim status is wearing a bit heavy these days, like mine is, Herbert is here for you.
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Art: “Christ as Savior and Judge”
by Petrus Christus (ca. 1450)