Christmas 5: This Turbulent Priest (For Thomas Becket, Archbishop and Martyr)

“So have no fear of them, for nothing is covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops. And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul.”
(Matthew 10:26-28)

If even the sparrow has a home near the altar,
how much more the priest, killed there by the king’s men,
who, though the king’s drinking chum, could not be bought,
fearing God more than crown?

If the day is coming when whispers will be shouts
and the secretive heart will have its chambers turned out,
then how much more will the faithful ones shine
who did not take hold of the throne?

And if turbulent priests are quickly snuffed out,
how much will their turbulence resound
when God born as child, king born to die,
divides truth from clanging gong?

Sold with a mutter, Becket still shouts.
The Truth wins the heart, wins the night.

Go!

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               Go!
into the world
                  and find!
the overlays
                    that blind
your eyes from what surrounds.
                              Go out. Decide
the lens through which to see your world.
                                        Behind
your chosen screen
                      is light
that shines wherever you may walk.
                                   Be light.
The world has many interfaces;
                              see
the face before you. Look into
                                 the eye
of truth, the way, the life,
                for this
                            is life -
no interface, but face-to-face
                                and bright,
transforming knowledge.
                       (Nothing here can hide.)

Homecoming

Do you see yonder cloud that’s almost in shape of a camel?
(William Shakespeare)

To the untrained eye, nothing has changed:
smoke still billows from chimneys;
mornings are dark; alarms wake too early;
the mad prince still fools the diplomat with his madness,
the sane with his sanity.

To the untrained eye, all these clouds look the same
and cannot be seen for the smog.
Brakes still wail; billboards roar;
by afternoon, relax your tie –
yet it is not like it was before.
This flesh-and-blood normality
denies this Nonetheless which sits
beside us and inside and knocks
us sideways with its shock of grace.

Everything is rent in two;
these clouds are never still, and all
these forms we fill will not contain
what lies before our way.
For every indifferent sigh, repent;
as the lie falls away,
falls the Day.

Doxa

White though simple carries every colour.
Glory – small word – is manifold.
Break apart light and find prismatic wonder.
None of this has words.

What then? What sounds can be made to stir hearts?
The Word – singular yet many pleats,
Many rooms – beams and breathes from beginning.
How can we reveal?

We cannot. Only delight. The revealing is done
So revel, marvel. Stand back in amaze.
No tweet. In an instant, a gram of this can be lost
Yet Glory’s weight compels.

Throw off light and momentary. Minds explode with triune truth.
Saying is simple; sound has many ripples.
Light waves and darts and ruins categories.
Your first and only crime was to ignore true Glory.
Stop. Be blown away.

Lent: New Song 5

What have you seen of the past?
What stories do history’s pages tell?
A mute dirge perhaps, or a final bugle,
retreat sounding when battle’s about to be won?

You look only in false places;
the witness of the past tells only half-truth.
It was not there when firmaments were sealed
or covenants carved into space.

Shine light. Everything illuminated
comes to life. The dead must hide
in darkness where there is no voice.
Yet in the light a new song sings

and hails the truth that reigns…

Christmas Candle: Christmas is Light

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The day comes and goes: families meet; food’s eaten;
As tradition has it, rain comes at night.
What then? Police patrol the festive season;
Roads are blocked in case the Christmas sprite
Has rendered some of us unsafe to drive.
So wait. The moment passes, and too soon
The chance will leave as quick as it arrived.
Within the scheduled week there still is room,
Yet hearts congeal and work expands like gas
When holidays are done. No holy days?
Each moment hides deep grace; and though it pass
The pregnant hope of things will have its way.
Open eyes to see the swelling joy
Of light and life amidst our vacant noise.