Monday, October 5, 2015

Poem by Bp. H.C.G. Moule: On the Picture of St. Augustine and his Mother

St. Monica and St. Augustine by Ary Scheffer (d. 1858) - I assume this is the painting to which the Bishop refers, because it is 19th century and it is similar to his depiction.

Together, 'neath the Italian heaven,
They rest, the Mother and the Son;
He once from her by errors riven,
Now both in Jesus one:
The dear consenting hands are knit;
And either face as there they sit
Is lifted as to something seen
Beyond the blue serene.

Bright as a noon without one cloud
The Mother's countenance smiles and shines;
The life-long knowledge of her God
In all its happier lines;
The untroubled gladness of a soul
Where He has long possessed the whole,
Only now stirred to livelier bliss
Because her child is His.

Dark is the younger brow, and worn
With inward strife beyond its years;
There looks a soul that late was torn
With torturing pride and fears;
A mind that spent its weary strength
To span the doleful depth and length -
The Bythos-fount and Aeon-stream -
That formed the Gnostic dream.

How different each from each surveys -
The bright, the dark - yon dazzling air!
Yet either saint with meeting gaze
Finds the same object there;
Alike on glad and aching eyes,
As clear, as sweet, the glories rise
Of Him who draws each soul above -
One Lord of light and love.

Bishop H. C. G. Moule
Dec. 27, 1873

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