Monday, December 18, 2006

How Long We Wait

How Long We Wait

How long we wait, with minds as quiet as time,
Like sentries on a tower.
How long we watch, by night, like the astronomers.

Heaven, when will we hear you sing,
Arising from our grassy hills,
And say: “The dark is done, and Day
Laughs like a Bridegroom in His tent, the lovely sun,
His tent the sun, His tent the smiling sky!”?

How long we wait with minds as dim as ponds
While stars swim slowly homeward in the water of
our west!
Heaven, when will we hear you sing?

Thomas Merton. Collected Poems.
New York: New Directions Press, 1977: 89-90.

Just came home from hospital yesterday (scary, but OK now!) to find this wonderful Merton poem, so central to Advent, the Advent time we all live in, and have lived in for all the generations since that first Christmas, "long, long ago..."

I sense a new seriousness, and a new light-heartedness, in what I must do from now on in. God has been trying for some time, I think, to get me to prioritise what I do, and don't do. I think he is calling me to concentrate on him, and on what he gives me, rather than on what I think I ought to be doing for him. I've known this, in a kind of a way, for a long time; but I've tried to give lip-service to it, rather than admit my deep need.

Hmm. Lots to think about. With your permission, you readers, I'll try and think some of this through with you in the next few posts... After all, we're in this together, somehow!

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