Poetry

Lectionary Poetry – Seventh Sunday of Easter (Year C)

With the dawn of a new church year, we have launched a new feature on our website, a weekly post of poetry that resonates with the lectionary readings for that week.

 
 

*** Revised Common Lectionary ***

Lectionary Reading:
Acts 16:16-34

 
 

CLASSIC POEM:

To Althea, from Prison
Richard Lovelace

When Love with unconfinèd wings
Hovers within my Gates,
And my divine Althea brings
To whisper at the Grates;
When I lie tangled in her hair,
And fettered to her eye,
The Gods that wanton in the Air,
Know no such Liberty.

When flowing Cups run swiftly round
With no allaying Thames,
Our careless heads with Roses bound,
Our hearts with Loyal Flames;
When thirsty grief in Wine we steep,
When Healths and draughts go free,
Fishes that tipple in the Deep
Know no such Liberty.

When (like committed linnets) I
With shriller throat shall sing
The sweetness, Mercy, Majesty,
And glories of my King;
When I shall voice aloud how good
He is, how Great should be,
Enlargèd Winds, that curl the Flood,
Know no such Liberty.

Stone Walls do not a Prison make,
Nor Iron bars a Cage;
Minds innocent and quiet take
That for an Hermitage.
If I have freedom in my Love,
And in my soul am free,
Angels alone that soar above,
Enjoy such Liberty.

*** This poem is in the public domain,
and may be read in a live-streamed worship service.
 
 

CONTEMPORARY POEM:

Some Advice to Those Who Will
Serve Time in Prison
Nazim Hikmet

SNIPPET:

If instead of being hanged by the neck
you’re thrown inside
for not giving up hope
in the world, your country, and people,

[ READ THE FULL POEM ]

 
 

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