Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday
I know it's a week late. Still, courtesy of Red Lion Reports, I share this excerpt from T.S. Eliot's poem, Ash Wednesday:
  • Although I do not hope to turn again
  • Although I do not hope
  • Although I do not hope to turn

  • Wavering between the profit and the loss
  • In this brief transit where the dreams cross
  • The dreamcrossed twilight between birth and dying
  • (Bless me father) though I do not wish to wish these things
  • From the wide window towards the granite shore
  • The white sails still fly seaward, seaward flying
  • Unbroken wings

  • And the lost heart stiffens and rejoices
  • In the lost lilac and the lost sea voices
  • And the weak spirit quickens to rebel
  • For the bent golden-rod and the lost sea smell
  • Quickens to recover
  • The cry of quail and the whirling plover
  • And the blind eye creates
  • The empty forms between the ivory gates
  • And smell renews the salt savour of the sandy earth

  • This is the time of tension between dying and birth
  • The place of solitude where three dreams cross
  • Between blue rocks
  • But when the voices shaken from the yew-tree drift away
  • Let the other yew be shaken and reply.

  • Blessèd sister, holy mother, spirit of the fountain, spirit of the garden,
  • Suffer us not to mock ourselves with falsehood
  • Teach us to care and not to care
  • Teach us to sit still
  • Even among these rocks,
  • Our peace in His will
  • And even among these rocks
  • Sister, mother
  • And spirit of the river, spirit of the sea,
  • Suffer me not to be separated

  • And let my cry come unto Thee.


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