The singer sang from beyond the grave,*
Or in his grave, to be true.
His voice reached up to the architrave
And vibrated in every pew.
The vicar called on the choir to sing
As loud as loud they could.
But the voice had an even louder ring
Sending quivers down the rood.
Oh Lord, they sang, oh mighty God,
Gloria in excelsis deo.
But the singer sang of life’s hard rod
And of Hell's undying blow.
The women looked up the pillars tall,
While big-eyed children cried.
The singer had them in his thrall,
But was not to be descried.
The vicar read his sermon out,
As if proclaiming from the mount.
The singer responded with a voice so stout,
He sang of fear’s rich fount.
The congregation lost relation
To the good man’s godly word.
They stood in helpless trepidation,
Their souls so far disturbed.
The church’s doors swung open wide,
To a cascade of chattering leaves;
The screams and panic and terror inside
Shook the church to its very eaves.
And then, oh then, oh horror pure,
The spectre appeared at the door.
His bloodied hair, his sombre allure,
Chilled the living to the core.
The vicar clutched up bible and ran
Through a hidden door to the side,
The singer opened his cloak like a fan
And wrapped all the children inside.
The women bemoaned this cruellest loss,
They wailed to the crucified Christ.
But bound and weak and nailed as he was,
There was nothing he could do.
* This Poem should be read in conjunction with 'The Pauper's Grave'