The Great Chain of Being

And if I could talk to a tree,

And he answer me,

What then should we tell each other?

That he and I are close as brothers?

For as I exist so surely does he,

And as I can say ‘I’ and ‘me’,

God grants him this same faculty,

In a spirit which is no frailty,

But a strength of strength,

Bound as by a cosmic length,

Of links that hold the heavens right,

Created by the Uncreated Light,

A chain that joins dust to dust,

Eternal, spotless knowing no rust,

But taut and strong it girds the height,

And in the deep outpours its light,

Binding things both near and far,

From every atom to the utmost star,

So, I shall speak to my brother tree,

And say to him that both are we:

Created things in this created place,

And our Maker shall I see as face to face,

When at the last the veiling matter fades,

And spirit speaks to spirit beyond the shades,

And still the chain that holds all things,

Will glitter as a thousand rings,

By which all life is joined as one,

In Him who sent His Begotten Son.


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