Of all the plants that spring up from the ground,
With more or richer blessings none are crowned
Than is the olive, which still feels that light
That makes the altar and the temple bright,
Gives lustre to the face, poisons expels,
All rankling wounds, all venomous biting heals,
Produceth softness, smoothness, suppless, ease,
Fattening all food, allaying all disease.
Such are the blessed effects the gospel hath
On sinners wounded with the sense of wrath
By fiery serpents stung; it cures their smart,
Rough nature smooths, softens the obdurate heart,
Feeds the internal temple's lamps of grace
And sets sweet lustre on the exterior face.
But where these glorious great effects are wrought
The olive must in the dove's mouth be brought,
For fruitless is the gospel remedy
Except the Spirit do the cure apply.
Order and Disorder Canto 8: 167-184