Ducks

From troubles of the world I turn to ducks,

Beautiful comical things

Sleeping or curled

Their heads beneath white wings

By water cool,

Or finding curious things

To eat in various mucks

Beneath the pool, ….
Yes, ducks are valiant things

On nests of twigs and straws,

And ducks are soothy things

And lovely on the lake

When that the sunlight draws

Thereon their pictures dim In colours cool.

And when beneath the pool

They dabble, and when they swim

And make their rippling rings,

O ducks are beautiful things!

But ducks are comical things:-

As comical as you. Quack!

They waddle round, they do.

They eat all sorts of things,

And then they quack.

By barn and stable and stack

They wander at their will,

But if you go too near

They look at you through black

Small topaz-tinted eyes

And wish you ill.
When God had finished the stars and whirl of coloured suns

He turned His mind from big things to fashion little ones;

Beautiful tiny things (like daisies) He made, and then

He made the comical ones in case the minds of men

Should stiffen and become

Dull, humourless and glum,

And so forgetful of their Maker be

As to take even themselves – quite seriously.

Caterpillars and cats are lively and excellent puns:

All God’s jokes are good – even the practical ones!

And as for the duck, I think God must have smiled a bit

Seeing those bright eyes blink on the day He fashioned it.

And he’s probably laughing still at the sound that came out of its bill!

by F.W. Harvey

The Incarnate One by Edwin Muir

The windless northern surge, the sea-gull’s scream,
And Calvin’s kirk crowning the barren brae.
I think of Giotto the Tuscan shepherd’s dream,
Christ, man and creature in their inner day.
How could our race betray
The Image, and the Incarnate One unmake
Who chose this form and fashion for our sake?

The Word made flesh here is made word again
A word made word in flourish and arrogant crook.
See there King Calvin with his iron pen,
And God three angry letters in a book,
And there the logical hook
On which the Mystery is impaled and bent
Into an ideological argument.

There’s better gospel in man’s natural tongue,
And truer sight was theirs outside the Law
Who saw the far side of the Cross among
The archaic peoples in their ancient awe,
In ignorant wonder saw
The wooden cross-tree on the bare hillside,
Not knowing that there a God suffered and died.

The fleshless word, growing, will bring us down,
Pagan and Christian man alike will fall,
The auguries say, the white and black and brown,
The merry and the sad, theorist, lover, all
Invisibly will fall:
Abstract calamity, save for those who can
Build their cold empire on the abstract man.

A soft breeze stirs and all my thoughts are blown
Far out to sea and lost. Yet I know well
The bloodless word will battle for its own
Invisibly in brain and nerve and cell.
The generations tell
Their personal tale: the One has far to go
Past the mirages and the murdering snow.

I heard this poem mentioned when I was at St George’s at Windsor. An amazing place and lots of ideas.

The Lincoln Imp (via Bishop Tim Ellis’s Weblog)

Fantastic – a prayer for our local club!

The Lincoln Imp Lincoln City FC face possible relegation from the Footbal League tomorrow as they face Aldershot. The local paper asked me to write a prayer for them: here it is. As a Wednesdayite who has faced relegation so many times, it's heartfelt! We love the Imps, O Lord. They give us joy more than pain,  hope more than disdain, and pride more than division. Bless the team for all they mean, the fans for all their chants. And Sincil Bank, we offer thanks f … Read More

via Bishop Tim Ellis's Weblog