In the Mourning

A solitary drop of rain
as if the heavens know
of the impending tears.
The wind whips across
the frontage of the edifice
of man, for God.
Those gathered,
grip jackets, scarves,
clinging to warmth
mirroring the life they wish
they could tightly grasp.
The stoic priest
stands sentinel,
silently whispering internal prayers,
steeling himself to carry
what they cannot hold alone.
Black carriage creeps into view,
unnaturally slow,
toward the moment that
no one wants to acknowledge.
The toll of the bell
signals that this,
this is the end of the beginning.
Head inclined between the father
and the custodian of the deceased.
They turn and enter.
The Church.
The throne room.
The embrace of the Almighty.

(Written: 24.I.18)


Shots in the desert

Curled, on one side
sleep alludes me.
Huddled against artificial cold,
the tick of the clock,
a monstrous metronome
reminding me
that sleep, I cannot.
Prayers and good wishes
rises ceaselessly
‘Get well Father’,
‘Sorry you are ill’
in my self indulgent sickbed
but it is not feverish dreams
that trouble my aching mind
but a gunshot
three thousand miles away.
I cannot hear it
with ear, or newspaper
But I can feel it
as it rips through
the fractured, manmade communion.
Enduring by baptism.
They lay upon their side
curled, eternal rest now theirs,
huddled around Christ
a premature martyrdom.
The tick of the clock
a reminder
that in the West
They lay forgotten.
The Copts. Again.


(Written: 29.XII.17)

Holy Innocents

A desperate order
to cling
to vassal power.
To preserve
a reputation
build on shifting sand.
A hand waved, dismissively.
A page signed, hastily.
No less than murder
at the command
of a king.
To open the door
to death,
offering the innocent
in tribute,
that the scythe
might not swing upon him
for a season.
Yet it comes
with judgement
for those deeds.
So amidst the crying
of little lives,
potential, barely recognised
the Holy Family flee.
Sacrifice made
in deed, not will
speeds them safely.
Those children
now born by angels wings
to Eden.

(Written: 28.XII.17)

O Emmanuel

the forced occupation
of the barren soul.
The river beds,
empty, cracked.
Once lush landscape
gives way to tundra.
The unimaginable darkness,
hostile to sunlight,
gives no warmth,
a long season
of desolation.
the beating heart
of creation, slows,
flatlines, ceased.
But this, this
is not death,
the despair of hopelessness,
this is the darkness
before the dawn.
Mountains shake,
the river beds swell,
The Water of Life begins
to bubble beneath the surface.
Clouds burst,
fresh rain of hope
spatters thirsty ground.
The soul awakes,
eyes lifted
straining for the horizon,
Lo, He comes,
Our God,


O Rex Gentium

Eternal monarch
whose birth binds nations
drawing mankind to Himself.
Angels in bright array
singing of His glory,
announce salvation
to His fallen creatures.
Beings of dust
elevated to the highest realm
to enter the throne room.
From that child’s first breath
humanity is fulfilled
responding to
the Universal King.
His cry
pieces the darkness
O King of nations,
Father of all,
who bestows true joy
to mortal hearts.

(Written: 22.XII.17)


O Oriens

Watching, waiting
alone in darkness.
The dayspring breaks,
the dawn of faith.
The shroud of doubt
retreats in light
as the longest eve
abruptly ends.
The voice of God
brings forth The Word,
He who commands
the morning,
and guides
the sun to its place.
The clouds part
and now
with clear vision
death rescinds,
fear flees,
love remains.
He is the beginning
who rose in the East
to transform
my body
to His own.

(Written: 21.XII.17)

O Clavis David

Captive soul cries out
from torment
of dungeon deep.
in worldly flesh,
forced to bow,
before horned emperor
of the underworld.
Ransom set
but unattainable
as fingers scrape the walls
and claw at the bars,
stretching into the void.
The hinges rust,
lock overcome with moss
and dirt.
The mocking laughter
of fallen Seraph
echoes through dim cell.
Frantic prayers
whispered, fading
reach His ears.
The bright light
of the Morning Star
raids the crypt.
O Key of David.

(Written: 20.XII.17)

O Radix Jesse


You did not just descend
from throne room
to lowly earthly kingdom
in a royal visitation,
to wave at subjects
from sate carriage
or mingle briefly
with smiles
or stilted conversation,
but rather
you dug deeply
into our human nature,
not wrapping yourself
in a temporary cloak of flesh
but sinking
into the roots,
below the surface,
that stretch back
through our long history.
But a blink,
to you,
to Him,
but for us.
O Root of Jesse
your signal
that we are
Your very own

(Written: 19.XII.17)

O Adonai

The rumbling anticipation,
innocent maiden
through sweat
and gritted teeth
births the Word
of the prophets.
He comes,
not with Warlord might
or Kingly splendour
but masked,
squirming, bloodied
upon the hay.
A foretold death
of a peaceful prince
that will drive all men
to their knees.
O Lord
we join the angels song.
to fully grasp
the power
wrapped in swaddling clothes.
A stranger.
The Lord.

(Written: 18.XII.17)

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