The Soul and the Body
by John Davies (1569-1626)
But how shall we this union well express?
Nought ties the soul; her subtlety is such,
She moves the body, which she doth possess,
Yet no part toucheth, but by virtue’s touch.
Then dwells she not therein as in a tent;
Nor as a pilot in his ship doth sit;
Nor as the spider in his web is pent;
Nor as the wax retains the print in it;
Nor as a vessel water doth contain;
Nor as one liquor in another shed;
Nor as the heat doth in the fire remain;
Nor as a voice throughout the air is spread.
But as the fair and cheerful morning light
Doth here and there her silver beams impart,
And in an instant doth herself unite
To the transparent air, in all and part;
Still resting whole, when blows the air divide,
Abiding pure, when the air is most corrupted,
Throughout the air her beams dispersing wide,
And when the air is tossed, not interrupted:
So doth the piercing soul the body fill,
Being all in all, and all in part diffused,
Indivisible, incorruptible still,
Not forced, encountered, troubled or confused.
And as the sun above the light doth bring,
Though we behold it in the air below,
So from the eternal Light the soul doth spring,
Though in the body she her powers do show.