Wordsworth wrote an endless poem in blank verse on” the growth of a poet’s mind.” I shall attempt a more modest feat for a more distracted age: a blog, “Things which a Lifetime of Trying to Be a Poet has Taught Me.”
Poets of all men should know that human beings are embodied creatures. Our bodies are part of our glory, and the Christian hope is that they will be resurrected in the Last Day, not discarded. But now they partake of our fall—no more than the spirit, but no less either. This poem was first published in The Rolling Coulter 4:2 (Fall 1992): 41.
“Intricate engine angels might admire,
Material spirit, animated earth,
Crafted casket for celestial fire–
Doomed to die the day it has its birth.
Hands that open, befitting a gracious lord,
Able to touch a cheek as soft as mist,
To wield a pen, a brush, a harpsichord–
But just as apt to freeze into a fist.
Godlike image, able to stand erect,
Yet by what small and simple things laid low:
A sneeze, a scratch, a germ, and all is wrecked;
A few short years, the time has come to go.
Delicate instrument of Love or Lust,
Admirably compacted–out of dust.”
Remember: for more poetry like this, go to https://lanternhollow.wordpress.com/store/ and order Stars Through the Clouds! Also look for Inklings of Reality and Reflections from Plato’s Cave, Williams’ newest books from Lantern Hollow Press: Evangelical essays in pursuit of Truth, Goodness, and Beauty. And look for Williams’ very latest book, Deeper Magic: The Theology behind the Writings of C. S. Lewis, due out soon from Square Halo Books!
Donald T. Williams, PhD