Friday, April 22, 2011


We sang a wonderful hymn in church this evening. The text is by Carl P. Daw, Jr., who Nathan happens to be taking a hymnology class with this semester.

How shallow former shadows seem
beside this great reverse
as darkness swallows up the Light
of all the universe:
creation shivers at the shock,
the Temple rends its veil,
a pallid stillness stifles time,
and nature's motions fail.

This is no midday fantasy,
no flight of fevered brain.
With vengeance awful, grim, and real,
chaos is come again:
the hands that formed us from the soil
are nailed upon the cross;
the Word that gave us life and breath
expires in utter loss.

Yet deep within this darkness lives
a Love so fierce and free
that arcs all voids and--risk supreme!--
embraces agony.
Its perfect testament is etched
in iron, blood, and wood;
with awe we glimpse its true import
and dare to call it good.

Dare to call it good. Isn't that a wonderful text? So full of poetry and alliteration, and even an Othello reference: Chaos is come again.

And when the sixth hour had come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, "Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?" which means, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" And some of the bystanders hearing it said, "Behold, he is calling Elijah." And someone ran and filled a sponge with sour wine, put it on a reed and gave it to him to drink, saying, "Wait, let us see whether Elijah will come to take him down." And Jesus uttered a loud cry and breathed his last. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And when the centurion, who stood facing him, saw that in this way he breathed his last, he said, "Truly this man was the Son of God!"
- Mark 15:33-39

No comments:

Post a Comment