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In a Welsh Chapel Darkly

I know you see me from up there,
from halfway up the steep and twisting lane.
In early half-light as you take your walk
I no doubt seem to loom as you descend,
appear to grow, to rise from earth,
my boxlike rectilinearity,
severe and unadorned geometry,
a silhouette against the solitary sodium source.

I once hosted fiery-throated hymns
from dedicated souls in Sunday best:
“Marchog, Jesu, yn llwyddiannus”,
“O! Iesu mawr, rho d’anian bur” –
voices rich and raised and resonant,
so filled with faith, so gorged with God.
My pitch-pine pews were polished
by coat and skirt and trouser twill.

Abandoned now, unloved, slab-still,
void and stark and desolate,
with quarry-tiled floor that would resound
with joy were anyone to walk upon it,
I present gaping emptiness, a thing felt,
a cave whose darkness, palpable,
is peopled by retreating echoes of my past,
like timorous ghosts far too afraid to speak.

But there is One I must not name –
though He might be known by
the four letters of the tetragrammaton –
who lodges in my roomy quarters,
cowers within my tight square corners,
seeking shadows when the sun stares in.
I hear Him breathing as
He sweats in His remorse, a thing smelt.

He hides from the accusing eyes of every nation,
the eyes that witness daily His forlorn creation.

Copyright © | Year Posted 2012




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Date: 12/13/2012 6:16:00 PM
I love dialect verse. What a fine write congrad's on your win. Light & Love
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Date: 12/13/2012 11:46:00 AM
Congratulations on your win Andrew. Love, Carol
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Date: 12/13/2012 8:05:00 AM
Many congratulations on your well-deserved super win, Andrew! An amazing piece which I greatly enjoyed! love and hugs, Leonora
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Andrew John
Date: 12/13/2012 9:20:00 AM
Many thanks, leonora. I've done a general reply to all of those who have been kind enough to comment, which you can no doubt find. It's good to get this feedback
Date: 12/13/2012 3:16:00 AM
Thank you, everyone, for your kind words. I didn't know I'd won till I saw the alerts in my inbox. I am, though, thinking of shortening it a bit, believing that all the business about "he remembers and repents" could come out, leaving still the main message that I've put the deity in the dock for the mess the world is in. (I half expected some flak for suggesting that, but, hey, it's the chapel talking!) :-) Thanks again, people.
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Date: 12/13/2012 2:52:00 AM
Andrew congrats on your big win, love this...David
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Andrew John
Date: 12/13/2012 3:17:00 AM
Many thanks. I've done a general reply to all of those who have been kind enough to comment, which you can no doubt find. It's good to get this feedback.
Date: 12/13/2012 12:34:00 AM
congratulations on your win Andrew xx
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Andrew John
Date: 12/13/2012 3:17:00 AM
Many thanks. I've done a general reply to all of those who have been kind enough to comment, which you can no doubt find. It's good to get this feedback.
Date: 12/12/2012 10:37:00 PM
Congratulations on your 1st place win.
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Andrew John
Date: 12/13/2012 3:18:00 AM
Many thanks. I've done a general reply to all of those who have been kind enough to comment, which you can no doubt find. It's good to get this feedback.
Date: 12/12/2012 9:49:00 PM
Andrew gwneud yn dda, llongyfarchiadau, I am congratulating Andrew. Well done .....Seren
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Andrew John
Date: 12/13/2012 3:18:00 AM
Many thanks. I've done a general reply to all of those who have been kind enough to comment, which you can no doubt find. It's good to get this feedback.
Date: 12/12/2012 7:09:00 PM
When the trumpets blow, the walls will shake, tremble, and come crashing down; capturing the spirit for ever, of One who cowers in darkness.
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Andrew John
Date: 12/13/2012 3:18:00 AM
Many thanks. I've done a general reply to all of those who have been kind enough to comment, which you can no doubt find. It's good to get this feedback.
Date: 12/12/2012 6:49:00 PM
There is more here each time I read it. A gift you have in story telling and description.......so artfully done! I'm wowed! Congratulations!
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Andrew John
Date: 12/13/2012 3:18:00 AM
Many thanks. I've done a general reply to all of those who have been kind enough to comment, which you can no doubt find. It's good to get this feedback.
Date: 12/12/2012 5:41:00 PM
Fantastic write! I'll be reading it over many times.
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Andrew John
Date: 12/13/2012 3:18:00 AM
Many thanks. I've done a general reply to all of those who have been kind enough to comment, which you can no doubt find. It's good to get this feedback.