Sitting by a Rivulet: An Image of Eternity

Barker fled England after James II was deposed.
  • Barker fled England after James II was deposed.
  • Ah lovely stream, how fitly may’st thou be,
  • By thy immutability,
  • Thy gentle motion and perennity,
  • To us the emblem of eternity:
  • And to us thou do’st no less
  • A kind of omnipresence too express.
  • For always as the ocean thou
  • Art always here, and at thy fountain too;
  • Always thou go’st thy proper course,
  • Spontaneously, and yet by force.
  • Each Wave forcing his precursor on;
  • Yet each one runs with equal haste,
  • As though each feared to be the last.
  • With mutual strife, void of contention,
  • In Troops they march, till thousands, thousands past.
  • Yet gentle stream, thou’rt still the same.
  • Always going, never gone;
  • Yet do’st all constancy disclaim,
  • Wildly dancing to thine own murmuring tuneful song;
  • Old as time, as love and beauty young.

Jane Barker (1652–1732) was an English novelist, poet, and supporter of James II, the last Catholic king of England. Fleeing England after James II was deposed during the Glorious Revolution (1688), she wrote and published under her own name a number of novels about her experiences as a woman during these times, including Exilius or The Banish’d Roman (1715). As a poet, Barker expressed her faith in God in complex and ornate figures and conceits, such as “Sitting by a Rivulet” exhibits.

Share / Tools

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • AddThis
  • Email

More from SDReader


Log in to comment

Skip Ad