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The May Magnificat

Written by: Gerard Manley Hopkins | Biography
 | Quotes (8) |
 May is Mary's month, and I
Muse at that and wonder why:
 Her feasts follow reason,
 Dated due to season—
Candlemas, Lady Day;
But the Lady Month, May,
 Why fasten that upon her,
 With a feasting in her honour? 

Is it only its being brighter
Than the most are must delight her?
 Is it opportunest
 And flowers finds soonest? 

Ask of her, the mighty mother:
Her reply puts this other
 Question: What is Spring?—
 Growth in every thing—

Flesh and fleece, fur and feather,
Grass and greenworld all together;
 Star-eyed strawberry-breasted
 Throstle above her nested 

Cluster of bugle blue eggs thin
Forms and warms the life within;
 And bird and blossom swell
 In sod or sheath or shell. 

All things rising, all things sizing
Mary sees, sympathising
 With that world of good,
 Nature's motherhood. 

Their magnifying of each its kind
With delight calls to mind
 How she did in her stored
 Magnify the Lord. 

Well but there was more than this:
Spring's universal bliss
 Much, had much to say
 To offering Mary May. 

When drop-of-blood-and-foam-dapple
Bloom lights the orchard-apple
 And thicket and thorp are merry
 With silver-surfèd cherry 

And azuring-over greybell makes
Wood banks and brakes wash wet like lakes
 And magic cuckoocall
 Caps, clears, and clinches all—

This ecstasy all through mothering earth
Tells Mary her mirth till Christ's birth
 To remember and exultation
 In God who was her salvation.



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