Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Favorite Poetry: The Earth's Shame

 I thought this poem of Chesterton's was appropriate for Lent, since it's about the Crucifixion.  If you don't understand it all, don't fret - I first discovered this lovely piece of poetry when Fr. Beck explained it to us at the Catholic summer camp for girls that I've gone to for the last three years, and I would never have gotten it without his help.  It's even more beautiful when you completely understand, but alas! I'm not as good at explanations as Fr. Beck is, so I'm afraid you're on your own.  Take time and think about each section.  It makes a beautiful meditation.

The Earth's Shame
by G. K. Chesterton
Name not his deed: in shuddering and in haste
We dragged him darkly o'er the windy fell:
That night there was a gibbet in the waste,
And a new sin in hell.
Be his deed hid from commonwealths and kings,
By all men born be one true tale forgot;
 But three things, braver than all earthly things,
Faced him and feared him not.
 Above his head and sunken secret face
Nested the sparrow's young and dropped not dead.
From the red blood and slime of that lost place
 Grew daisies white, not red.
And from high heaven looking upon him,
Slowly upon the face of God did come
A smile the cherubim and seraphim
Hid all their faces from.

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