“O Christ, Thou Art Within Me Like a Sea” by Edith Lovejoy Pierce (poem)

Parlar, May_Salt IV
May Parlar (Turkish, 1981–), Salt IV, 2018. From the photograph series Once I Fell in Time.

O Christ, thou art within me like a sea,
Filling me as a slowly rising tide.
No rock or stone or sandbar may abide
Safe from thy coming and undrowned in thee.

Thou dost not break me by the might of storm,
But with a calm upsurging from the deep
Thou shuttest me in thy eternal keep
Where is no ebb, for fullness is thy norm.

And never is thy flood of life withdrawn;
Thou holdest me till I am all thy own.
This gradual overcoming is foreknown.
Thou art within me like a sea at dawn.

This poem appears in Therefore Choose Life by Edith Lovejoy Pierce (Harper and Brothers, 1947).

Edith Lovejoy Pierce (1904–1983) was a Christian poet and pacifist. Born in Oxford, England, she married an American in 1929 and moved to the US the same year, settling in Evanston, Illinois. In her writing she drew inspiration from the Bible, Gandhi’s philosophy of nonviolent resistance, music, history, and mysticism, among other sources.

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