Sunday Sonnet

This morning we were confronted in church by an exposition on Genesis, how Jacob would not cross into the promised land because he feared Esau, who was arriving with 400 picked men. How in faith he was willing to send others, but his past made him fearful. He did not want to be vulnerable.

The text is “against you alone have I sinned”, The person David had sinned against was a dead Hittite: his widow had miscarried Diavid’s child. David had sinned. Locke knew that.

Some translation notes: sprite is spirit and used interchangeably with spirit and soul by Locke.

Graunt thou me mercy, Lord: thee thee alone
I haue offended, and offendyng thee,
For mercy loe, how I do lye and grone.
Thou with allpearcing eye beheldest me,
Without regard that sinned in thy sight.
Beholde againe, how now my spirite it rues,
And wailes the tyme, when I with foule delight
Thy swete forbearing mercy did abuse.
My cruell conscience with sharpned knife
Doth splat my ripped hert, and layes abrode
The lothesome secretes of my filthy life,
And spredes them forth before the face of God.
Who[m] shame fro[m] dede

shamelesse cold not restrain,
Shame for my dede is added to my paine.

Aanne Locke, Meditations of a Penitent Sinner.