For Holy Week. before confession.


Begin the song exactly where you are

For where you are contains where you have been

And holds the vision of your final sphere


And do not fear the memory of sin;

There is a light that heals, and, where it falls,

Transfigures and redeems the darkest stain


Into translucent colour. Loose the veils

And draw the curtains back, unbar the doors,

Of that dread threshold where your spirit fails,


The hopeless gate that holds in all the  fears

That haunt your shadowed city, fling it wide

And open to the light that finds and fares


Through the dark pathways  where you run and  hide,

through all the alleys of your riddled heart,

As pierced and open as His wounded side.


Open the map to Him and make a start,

And down the dizzy spirals, through the dark

His light will go before you, let Him chart


And name and heal. Expose the hidden ache

To him, the stinging fires and smoke that blind

Your judgement, carry you away, the mirk


And muted gloom in which you cannot find

The love that you once thought worth dying for.

Call Him to all you cannot call to mind


He comes to harrow Hell and now to your

Well guarded fortress let His love descend.

The icy ego at your frozen core


Can hear His call at last. Will you respond?


Malcolm Guite in Word in the Wilderness (2014)

[To hear Malcolm read the poem click here]





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