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T h e P o e t ic Wo n de r o f I sa ac Wa tt s

O father, do some mercy take, And I will no more verses make.13 His father did some mercy take that day, but the church can be grateful that Watts, contrary to his childish resolve, continued to make verses throughout the remainder of his life. The very gift that so annoyed his parents when he was a child would be sanctified and become the means of enriching the worship of tens of thousands of Christians in his lifetime, and millions in the centuries since his death. Watts’ mother, Sarah, found some handwritten poems one day and asked whether they were Isaac’s. He claimed they were his, but she doubted that a child could write poetry with the degree of depth she observed. An idea occurred to her, and she promptly had her son sit down at the kitchen table and write her a poem. He did. Note the depth of his gospel understanding in these ten lines written on demand when he was seven years old: I am a vile polluted lump of earth; So I’ve continued since my birth; Although Jehovah grace does daily give me, As sure this monster Satan will deceive me. Come, therefore, Lord, from Satan’s claws relieve me. Wash me in Thy blood, O Christ, And grace divine impart. 8

The Poetic Wonder of Isaac Watts  

Read a sample chapter of Douglas Bond's The Poetic Wonder of Isaac Watts.