Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Evensong blues II

Singing today, I realised what it is that gives evensong its melancholy edge. The dimly-lit chapel late on a Wednesday afternoon, the shadows drawing closer, the few hardy members of the austere Scottish congregation hugging their winter coats around them as the dark falls ever earlier and we slip into the gloomy tunnel that is November. The wind howls around the stone walls and sheets of rain dash against the windows.

Turn not thy servants empty away, for we have thee as our only hope

Defend us from all perils and dangers of this night

Save us, O Lord, while waking and guard us while sleeping

The night creeps closer and the candles flicker and sputter in the draft - an echo of the gale whipping up the waves outside.

Bare branches rattle against the panes, trees are stripped and contorted as though with grief.

At this time of year, we are alone - deep in the night we listen to breath coming in gasps and cannot reach out to comfort the sleeper. We are the wrong person in the wrong place at the wrong time and the dark is all around and winter is coming.


Jeannie said...

This was lovely. Loved it.

Michael Dembinski said...

Pino - if you've not read the church poems of John Betjeman, I'd recommend you do so, they will immediately and totally click with you.

Another beautiful post. Please, do keep writing! You have much talent, and it behoves you to share it with your readers.