Tuesday, October 15, 2013

John Banister Tabb - Poem Repertoire vol. 5

The Sisters 
The waves forever move;
The hills forever rest:
Yet each the heavens approve,
And Love alike hath blessed
A Martha's household care,
A Mary's cloistered prayer.
Perhaps this poem struck me because the times are so vituperative.  If one be on the one side, the other side is surely terrible.  Unless the vice be versa?  That's not to take a position on any position but this: God seems to have it in mind that people can be different, even opposed, yet faithful.  I should note that Jesus tells Martha that her sister was doing what was right.  But I'm not inclined to think that he was condemning her concern for hospitality so much as her anxiety.

Structure-wise, the poem is chiastic, I think.  The two first lines set up a contrast, which the third line resolves.  The fourth line likewise resolves the contrast which comes in lines five and six.

It's really just a sweet poem that might be tucked away as a reminder for acceptable difference in quotidian life.

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