Edward Taylor (1642-1729), Preparatory Meditations before my Approach to the Lord's Supper
(beginning of Meditation
Still I complain; I am complaining still.
O woe is me! Was ever Heart like mine?
A Sty of Filth, a Trough of Washing-Swill,
A Dunghill Pit, a Puddle of mere Slime,
A Nest of Vipers, Hive of Hornets-stings,
A Bag of Poyson, Civit-Box of Sins.
Was ever Heart like mine? So bad? black? vile?
Is any Divell blacker? Or can Hell
Produce its match? It is the very soile
Where Satan reads his charms and sets his spell;
His Bowling Ally, where he sheeres his fleece
At Nine Pins, Nine Holes, Morrice, Fox and Geese.
James Thomson (1834-1882):
Once in a saintly passion
I cried with desperate grief,
"O Lord, my heart is black with guile,
Of sinners I am chief."
Then stooped my guardian angel
And whispered from behind,
"Vanity, my little man,
You're nothing of the kind."