Hopkins and Hitchens
The 1988-91 survey estimated there were seven million breeding pairs of chaffinches in Britain.
Glory be to God for dappled things —
For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow;
For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim;
Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches’ wings. . .
All things counter, original, spare, strange;
Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?)
With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim;
He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change:
— Pied Beauty, Gerard Manley Hopkins
I was reminded of the poem by Michael Novak. He reviews British-born journalist Christopher Hitchens's latest book. Alas, the often splendid Hitchens disagrees with Hopkins.