John Donne, 1573-1631
THIS is Natures nest of Boxes;
The Heavens containe the Earth,
the Earth, Cities,
And all these are Concentrique;
the common center to them all,
is decay, ruine.
(from John Moses, One Equall Light – An Anthology of the Writings of John Donne)
As Van Morrison says, “Rave on John Donne.” It seems that Donne’s words were still assuming the Ptolemaic universe, at least for his theological purpose to reveal the decay at the center of the universe. Bruce Cockburn sees Donne’s ruine “way out on the rim of the galaxy” in the Copernican universe. In either view, we see the tragic reality of our Manifest Propensity.
Bryan M. Christman @ Manifest Propensity, 2020