Begin the song exactly where you are,
Remain within the world of which you’re made.
Call nothing common in the earth or air,
Accept it all and let it be for good.
Start with the very breath you breathe in now,
This moment’s pulse, this rhythm in your blood
And listen to it, ringing soft and low.
Stay with the music, words will come in time.
Slow down your breathing. Keep it deep and slow.
Become an open singing-bowl, whose chime
Is richness rising out of emptiness,
And timelessness resounding into time.
And when the heart is full of quietness
Begin the song exactly where you are.
(Recommended by Colleen Sturrock)
Bracketed between the first
tentative prayers, a silence fills
this place, a shadowed listening
as our separateness seeks out
the Spirit’s focus for this hour
and gathers strength enough
to peer and soar
into small, shining arcs of praise
held at their lower ends
by the old hymns. Christ
in this crowd of rest and rising
humbles himself again to our
humanity; and like the sheep
(trembling in the shearer’s hands)
surrenders to us once more
As at his dark birth and death
we had his body in our fingers,
now, again, we split the whiteness
of his loaf by turns, and tasting
his imaged life against
the cup’s cool rim
we take him in.
Nourished by that final flesh,
that ultimate blood behind
the chosen signs, our God-thoughts,
seeds of worship, multiply to words.
Light flows down to us, and back,
joins us in one body of fire –
one polyphon of light now
sounding out himself –
one flame of singing
burning into being.