The Wreck of the Deutschland: Stanza 3 - Summary

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      The poet is surprised and startled to behold God’s frowning face and also the hell behind his face, apprehends that he might fall from a great height. The poet enquires about a shelter for himself then he energizes himself and takes refuge in Christ. The poet flies swiftly like a dove and his heart is like a loving dove. His heart experiences the feelings or instincts of homecoming pigeon. His heart flies out to take refuge in Christ who provides shelter.

Line by Line Analysis

Line 1: The frown of his face.....Before me: The poet sees God’s anger and his wrathful face.

Line 2: The hurtle of hell: Behind him is the hell into which he might fall or might be thrown from a great height.

Line 3: Where......was a place? The poet seeks shelter and asks where can he find one because behind him there is hell and before him is the omnipotent God.

Line 4: I whirled out wings that spell: At that very moment, for a brief period, the poet cried out for Christ’s help.

Line 5: And fled with a fling of the heart to the heart of the Host: The poet very swiftly flees to take shelter in Christ. The Host here is a sacred bread in the tabernacle and refers to the body of Christ.

Line 6: My heart, but you were dove winged, I can tell: His heart is like a dove winged which means his heart is swift and loving like a dove and he can confidently assert himself.

Line 7: Carrier-witted I am bold to boast: ‘Carrier-witted’ refers to the home coming instincts of the poet and he can say it outright.

Line 8: To flash from the flame to the flame then, tower from the grace to the grace: The poet means to say that terror in the manifestation of God which is intolerable to the poet and God dwells in the holy bread of ‘Host’ to which his heart flies to take refuge.

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