Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Let it go

A college friend just posted a verse of this fantastic poem:

let it go - the
smashed word broken
open vow or         
the oath cracked length
wise - let it go it 
was sworn to 

let them go - the                                                                        
truthful liars and 
the false fair friends
and the boths and 
neithers - you must let them go they
were born to go

let all go - the
big small middling
tall bigger really
the biggest and all
things - let all go

so comes love

~ e.e. cummings ~

...which reminded me of one of my favourite's: 

The Windhover (To Christ our Lord)

I CAUGHT this morning morning's minion, king-
dom of daylight's dauphin, dapple-dawn-drawn Falcon, in his riding
Of the rolling level underneath him steady air, and striding
High there, how he rung upon the rein of a wimpling wing
In his ecstasy! then off, off forth on swing, 
As a skate's heel sweeps smooth on a bow-bend: the hurl and gliding
Rebuffed the big wind. My heart in hiding
Stirred for a bird, - the achieve of; the mastery of the thing!

Brute beauty and valour and act, oh, air, pride, plume, here
Buckle! AND the fire that breaks from thee then, a billion
Times told lovelier, more dangerous, O my chevalier!

No wonder of it: sheer plod makes plough down sillion
Shine, and blue-bleak embers, ah my dear, 
Fall, gall themselves, and gash gold-vermillion.

~Gerard Manley Hopkins~

...and of the breaking out of new life from the ashes of destruction

*picture from here: http://cooleiststuffever.wikispaces.com/Mythical+creatures

Monday, 6 January 2014

The epiphany of the epiphany

Reading this yesterday and this a few days ago kept me awake last night (or it could have been the cheese combined with the latest Sherlock episode). As the tamed cynic post emphasises, the Magi (the wise men described in Matthew 2) were off by nine miles. They went to Jerusalem the seat of power and wealth to look for the king predicted by the star as that is where they expected to find him - not a few miles down the road in dirt, poverty and ignominy. So many still expect to find Christ in the presence of the powerful, the well-off, the intellectually and culturally noble, the charismatic and the 'clean' whether that be in the guise of the priests dripping in gold,  the power ministers in their limousines, the cathedrals of learning, the charismatic preachers with loud music and huge crowds, or in the nice wholesome family image which in so many circles is presented as the epitome of Christianity - but is that where he is?

In the past few years, the most powerful sense of the presence of Christ that I have come across has been in a prison which predominantly incarcerates sex offenders - paedophiles who have become the 'lepers' of our century, the unclean and despised and yet who, in this group, were searching for Christ. This is purely subjective, I know, perhaps there are many finding Christ in the economical, moral, or aesthetic high spots and, if so, may they continue to do so. But, for those who are not, perhaps you are looking in the wrong place.

Image taken from here: http://www.crown-industrial.com/frames/Graphics/sallyport_sm.gif