Advent 12: You are in the wilderness

For Thou art in the wildernessDrawing and leading Thine Own love…(Christina Rossetti, “The Chiefest Among Ten Thousand”) The barren land will bear fruitbut now, in this waiting time, I must gowhere barrenness still lingersto meet with You who chose thisof all the compass points in creation,of every nook of the ever-expanding universe –chose this place,Continue reading “Advent 12: You are in the wilderness”

Advent 10: Waiting

Bulbs in soil await the spring,and fruit awaits the sun,parched earth waits for thunderstormand watchmen wait for dawn. Guilt awaits the gavel’s fall,fear awaits the dreaded thing,hope waits for what is not seenand voices wait to sing. The busy spirit does not wait;“Time waits for no-one,” it will shout.Impatience sooner dies than waits,and reason tendsContinue reading “Advent 10: Waiting”

Too Much Light 1: Prepare the Way

Delays are bad today; nothing moves. Contained at interchange, a stencil house smiles, as though to make this place feel more like home. Small comfort: we go nowhere fast. The morning yawns through Western traffic haze; the day’s light’s too bright. We squint in glare. Lane changes ache; all is standstill until a way canContinue reading “Too Much Light 1: Prepare the Way”

Hymn of the Rock

Continuing my project of setting John Newton and William Cowper’s Olney Hymns to new music, here is my latest, a hymn which Newton called “That Rock Was Christ”, after 1 Corinthians 10:4. Newton’s words are, as always, beautiful, verging on heartbreaking. I have tried to capture them with my tune. It is perhaps the recordingContinue reading “Hymn of the Rock”

The Second Day (Holy Saturday)

Probably the first “liturgical” poem that I wrote was on Easter Saturday about six years ago. I had recently read Bruce Dawe’s marvellous “And a Good Friday was had by all” and, having been struck by the immediacy of his language and the power of his imagery, I felt moved to write something similar. IContinue reading “The Second Day (Holy Saturday)”

Qui Habitat Part 5 (Fifth Sunday of Lent)

Today’s poem continues my series for the Sundays of Lent, due to finish next week with Palm Sunday. Each poem draws on the psalm and the Gospel reading for the day, as well as some of the other set readings where appropriate. You can find the readings that it based upon here. Qui Habitat PartContinue reading “Qui Habitat Part 5 (Fifth Sunday of Lent)”