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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.”

What happened to magical places like Loth Lorien after The Lord of the Rings was over and the Fourth Age was well under way and the Elves had departed?  This poem is in the same form as Tennyson’s “Lady of Shalott.”

LOTH LORIEN

From silver trunk the golden leaf

Blows through the old abandoned fief,

For Time, the robber and the thief,

Has brought the hidden realm to grief;

The wonder is withdrawn.

Now far beyond the Western Sea

The merry folk have gone to be

Naught but a fading memory

In Caras Galadon.

 

For untold years Galadriel

Did weave her magic and her spell.

Nor warg nor orc nor dragon fell

Could enter the enchanted veil

Until it was withdrawn.

Now in the once protected Wood

The Evil mingles with the Good—

Foul things that never could have stood

In Caras Galadon.

Now through the hushed and chilling air

There rings no voice of minstrel fair,

No melody of sweetness rare,

No magic words beyond compare;

The music is withdrawn.

The happy sound of harper’s glee

Sounds only far beyond the Sea.

The rasping raven’s symphony

Fills Caras Galadon.

 

In Cerin Amroth, Arwen’s tomb

Lies hidden in the gathering gloom.

The niphredil no longer bloom.

She sleeps within that narrow room,

All memory withdrawn.

The sons to Aragorn she bore:

They come to mourn her there no more.

They sleep beneath the marble floor

Of cold and deep Rath Dinen, far

From Caras Galadon.

A lonely wanderer passes by;

He sees there is no shelter nigh.

The stars are twinkling in the sky.

He groans, and on the ground doth lie

Within his cloak withdrawn.

The leaves are rustling on high.

It seems to him they softly sigh

A sad lament—he know not why—

In Caras Galadon.

Donald T. Williams, PhD

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 books: Deeper Magic: The Theology behind the Writings of C. S. Lewis (Baltimore: Square Halo Books, 2016) and “An Encouraging Thought”: The Christian Worldview in the Writings of L. R. R. Tolkien (Cambridge, OH: Christian Publishing House, 2018)!  Order from the publisher or Amazon.

 

 

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244

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.”

 Why is the modern church so spiritually impotent?  Maybe it should pay attention to the biblical idea of what it should be about, and how.

PRACTICAL ECCLESIOLOGY

Commentary, 1 Cor. 14:26, Col. 3:16

Each member has a place; each one belongs,

As seen when, gathered as a congregation

They sing their psalms and hymns and holy songs.

Whether two or three or mighty throngs,

The Lord is in their midst.  A priestly nation,

Each member has a place; each one belongs.

The Lord himself with love eternal longs

For them; each one by special invitation

Is singing psalms and hymns and holy songs.

A pincer movement, ministry:  the prongs?

A verse, a prayer, a word of exhortation.

Each member has a place; each one belongs.

How beautiful the feet, the sandal thongs

Which go to every tongue and tribe and nation

Singing psalms and hymns and holy songs.

Spectators passive in their pew?  It wrongs

The vision, suffocates the celebration.

Each member has a place; each one belongs,

Singing psalms and hymns and holy songs.

House church in India

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 books: Deeper Magic: The Theology behind the Writings of C. S. Lewis (Baltimore: Square Halo Books, 2016) and “An Encouraging Thought”: The Christian Worldview in the Writings of L. R. R. Tolkien (Cambridge, OH: Christian Publishing House, 2018)!

Donald T. Williams, PhD

238

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.”

 The church of St. Mary the Virgin in Oxford is the chapel of Oxford University.  Its long history witnessed many significant events: the heresy trial of the Oxford Martyrs, with one column still bearing a gash from the erection of the platform on which they stood, for example.  A cross of bricks embedded in the asphalt of Broad Street marks the spot where the stake was driven for their execution.  Latimer asked Ridley to play the man when they were burned together, for God would see to it that their fire would light a candle that would never be put out.  Thomas Cranmer at first recanted, but then he recovered his courage, recanted his recantation, and was burned holding first into the fire the hand that had signed that dastardly recantation. The saints were made of stern stuff in those days.

Hugh Latimer

THE OXFORD MARTYRS

St. Mary the Virgin has a pillar defaced,

A ledge chipped in the stone on which to rest

The beam that held the platform where they placed

The men they meant to martyr.  Who’d have guessed

The way the Faith they stubbornly confessed

Would rise up like a Phoenix from the flames?

(A few blocks down, a cross still marks its nest.)

And when those stalwarts stood to hear their names

Read out as heretics, their mortal frames

Consigned to fiery death, could they have known?

Did they by faith then hear the Lord proclaim

Their place among the martyrs ‘round His throne?

Latimer and Ridley played the man,

And Cranmer clasped the fire by the hand.

Thomas Cranmer

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 books: Deeper Magic: The Theology behind the Writings of C. S. Lewis (Baltimore: Square Halo Books, 2016) and “An Encouraging Thought”: The Christian Worldview in the Writings of L. R. R. Tolkien (Cambridge, OH: Christian Publishing House, 2018)!

Donald T. Williams, PhD

 

237

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.”

Dust we are; to dust we shall return.  It’s not the end of the story, thank God, but it is the beginning.

 

 

EARTH

The origin and ground of all who grieve

Is ground we walk on, kicking as we go

The bones of Adam and the flesh of Eve.

Dust to dust, the day they took their leave

They sowed the bitter seed of death and woe

Deep in the fertile ground of all who grieve.

We reap the thorns and thistles, we receive

The harvest, and within us still we grow

The bones of Adam and the flesh of Eve.

With all our efforts, all we can achieve

Is to extend the seedbeds, row on row,

Planted in the ground of all who grieve.

The winds take up the dust, the winds that weave

Their way around the world, and there they blow

The bones of Adam and the flesh of Eve.

We look away; we’d rather not believe.

Still, none who walks the earth can help but know

The origin and ground of all who grieve:

The bones of Adam and the flesh of Eve.

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 books: Deeper Magic: The Theology behind the Writings of C. S. Lewis (Baltimore: Square Halo Books, 2016) and “An Encouraging Thought”: The Christian Worldview in the Writings of L. R. R. Tolkien (Cambridge, OH: Christian Publishing House, 2018)!

Donald T. Williams, PhD

229

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.”

Marlowe’s Dr. Faustus sells his soul to the Devil for twenty-four years of ultimate temporal wealth and power.  This curtal sonnet picks him up at the last minute of that period, as Marlowe so brilliantly portrays it.

image-Faust

UNFAITHFUL

He saw Christ’s blood stream through the firmament;

A drop—a half drop—would have saved his soul,

But Faust for comfort turned to Lucifer.

The pain it would have cost him to repent

Was more immediate a threat, all told,

Than what an hour later he’d incur.

 

He could not stop the turning of the spheres

Or even slow the pace at which they rolled.

So much for power!  That had been the spur

To what he, after four and twenty years,

No longer could defer.

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 books, Deeper Magic: The Theology behind the Writings of C. S. Lewis (Baltimore: Square Halo Books, 2016) and An Encouraging Thought: The Christian Worldview in the Writings of J. R. R. Tolkien (Cambridge, OH: Christian Publishing House, 2018).

Donald T. Williams, PhD

Book-CSLTheology-Cover