a murder beheld

wordcraft for the feast of St. Thomas á Becket:

wounded head yet heart withheld
such gruesome blows, knights hand upheld
Thomas á Becket, a murder beheld
Canterbury’s son betrayed and felled

a life they sought to extinguish and quelle
yet beloved martyr did they propel
marked by history and grace doth knell
Thomas á Becket, archbishop excelled


day of the wren

wordcraft for the feast of st. stephen:

a-hunting, a-hunting, what a day to begin
clouds tell us where can we find the great wren?
fleeing his catch the betraying bird shudders
O how to escape the celebration of mummers?

they hunt me for treachery not of my own
they hunt me, O why can’t they leave me alone?
the wild-eyed strawboys a-hunting the wren
garish colours of scarecrows their gaze turns within

how blind can you be to your own treachery?
given over as they are to innermost lechery
yet continue they do as always they will
pursue me with violence that can by no means fill

he who was martyred by an intimate betrayal
the celebration of new bread dipped in a grail
the wrenboys mourn for poor saint stephen
still hunting the wren like all the other heathen

just like our man judas who died in trespass
the kiss of betrayal, his blood in the grass
festive parade for my death – O how are they lost
how far have they wandered away from the cross

chasing me still they all flutter by
can they help but be captured in tradition but why?
why do they hunt me, hateful words do they utter
and how it began with this weary mutter:

‘the wren, the wren – the king of all birds
on staint stephens day was caught in the furze
up with the kettle and down with the pan
give us some money to bury the wren’

if I yield to their catch O what will they do
can they kill me and remain blind to virtue
I call to the ground and my God in the sky
witness my death yet forgive them thereby

and rain on my funeral O God in the sky
please make it a mess, don’t let them get by
with hunting and killing for Your Name sake
open their eyes that they see their mistake

take them back to remember years ago on a tree
Your very Son suffered and died even for me
for all of creation does groan with the weight
for the curse to be lifted when Your Kingdom dilates

then the wrenboys and I can at last end our feud
and sit down in laughter to lighten the mood
at Your great wedding feast for many to attend
the wren and the mummers at last to be friends

come forth fresh

resting Son
of the Ancient One

come forth fresh
from chosen flesh

beyond our imagination
is He, the Incarnation

Life turned toward
a people adored

enmeshed in our circumstance
threshed in His glorious dance

with Love does He chase
until eternity to embrace

all bundled in this cloth
this newborn doth

hold the future and past
light and fire to cast

upon a people hallow
sitting in dark shadow

hoping for this very One
and a curse to be undone

wreathed in flesh

 “A novice master once responded when asked about a life lived in Christian authenticity, said that to be a Christian was not to know the answers but to begin to live in the part of the self where the question is born…He was speaking of an attitude of listening, of awareness of presence, of an openness to mystery.”
– Wendy M. Wright


wordcraft for advent:

when the day springs early
and darkness is eclipsed;

there is a moment of eternity
at the edge of daybreak
at the point where light peals back the thick darkness
[seeking to linger in silhouette]

i wait amidst the flecks of first light mingled with shadows
witness the march of radiance stalking persistent gloom

as the cresting wave of brilliance splashes over the horizon,
aglow…faint memories of a rumour intersect

[mercy cascades from upon the summit
with the hush of avalanche
compassion visits iniquity
threatening darkness trampled in the encompassing surge]

as the DaySpring shines forth wielding light upon those sitting in darkness
[in the shadow of death]

O, come forth DaySpring…shine Thy radiant splendor


the Son
heating the earth’s crust
warm air rising…

…the Kingdom bounding forth
in the course of a journey of courage and fear
[sunrise and twilight]

…shaking my reality
so that I know there is something beyond all this
[a resonance rising in the midst of renovation]

sky above

Your vastness
…does the sky above
speak of

it spreads its speech
like a rumour
in the recesses
of this dark, fertile earth
the Wholly Other One

yet like the sky
i cannot fully see
nor comprehend You
but i know
because You make Yourself