Rossetti Archive Textual Transcription
Document Title: Double Sonnet to the Painter D. G. Rossetti,
Suggested by his Picture “The
Girlhood of Mary Virgin”
Author: John Orchard
Date of Composition: 1849 August
Type of Manuscript: fair copy
Scribe: John Orchard
full Rossetti Archive record for this transcribed document is available.
- Musing, not seldom to my eye of mind
- Thy picture comes from thence (transition sure)
- Thy mind I read, & feel reflection pure
- Each of the other is Christ-entwined.
- Thy placid faith, from worldly taint refined,
- Is shown in Mary Virgin's lilied purity;
- And, by the books whereon the lily's shrined,
- Is told, broad-based past all obscurity,
- The virtues thou believest thou must act.
10 The palm with briar embraced doth express
- Heaven thy aim, though death toils hedge the way.
- In holy Joachim, of eye exact,
- Is known thy rigid truth can lop excess.
- Without the Spirit's presence doth pourtray
- Thy guileless modesty of soul; full sure
- It prompts thy flight: but, not too vain,
- Yet in the porch thou mindest to remain.
- Unless the Spirit freely doth endure,
- Well thou deemest no Godward course secure.
20 The lily-watering Angel doth explain
- To childlike innocence thou canst attain.
- Also, 'i the work he doeth, is shown mature
- In wisdom, quiet, & earnest, all thy heart
- Is set to do thy task. By lily-white
- Is told the chasteness of thy sensuous eye:
- And the pictured whole—its symbol doth impart
- That all of each for thee hath tongue of light
- Christ-utterance, & truths God-high.
Electronic Archive Edition: 1