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Poem for the Day

Posted: 20 January 2013

To start my week of songs and poems by Robert Burns, here is an extract from one of my favourites. Keep your requests coming in.
 

O ye wha are sae guid yoursel',
Sae pious and sae holy,
Ye've nought to do but mark and tell
Your neibours' fauts and folly!
Whase life is like a weel-gaun mill,
Supplied wi' store o' water;
The heaped happer's ebbing still,
An' still the clap plays clatter.

Hear me, ye venerable core,
As counsel for poor mortals
That frequent pass douce Wisdom's door
For glaikit Folly's portals:
I, for their thoughtless, careless sakes,
Would here propone defences
Their donsie tricks, their black mistakes,
Their failings and mischances.

Ye see your state wi' theirs compared,
And shudder at the niffer;
But cast a moment's fair regard,
What maks the mighty differ;
Discount what scant occasion gave,
That purity ye pride in;
And (what's aft mair than a' the lave),
Your better art o' hidin.

Ye high, exalted, virtuous dames,
Tied up in godly laces,
Before ye gie poor Frailty names,
Suppose a change o' cases;
A dear-lov'd lad, convenience snug,
A treach'rous inclination
But let me whisper i' your lug,
Ye're aiblins nae temptation.

Then gently scan your brother man,
Still gentler sister woman;
Tho' they may gang a kennin wrang,
To step aside is human:
One point must still be greatly dark,
The moving Why they do it;
And just as lamely can ye mark,
How far perhaps they rue it.

Who made the heart, 'tis He alone
Decidedly can try us;
He knows each chord, its various tone,
Each spring, its various bias:
Then at the balance let's be mute,
We never can adjust it;
What's done we partly may compute,
But know not what's resisted.

Address To The Unco Guid
Robert Burns

Poem for the Day

Posted: 19 January 2013

I went out to the hazel wood,
Because a fire was in my head,
And cut and peeled a hazel wand,
And hooked a berry to a thread;
And when white moths were on the wing,
And moth-like stars were flickering out,
I dropped the berry in a stream
And caught a little silver trout.

When I had laid it on the floor
I went to blow the fire a-flame,
But something rustled on the floor,
And some one called me by my name:
It had become a glimmering girl
With apple blossom in her hair
Who called me by my name and ran
And faded through the brightening air.

Though I am old with wandering
Through hollow lands and hilly lands,
I will find out where she has gone,
And kiss her lips and take her hands;
And walk among long dappled grass,
And pluck till time and times are done
The silver apples of the moon,
The golden apples of the sun.

The Song of Wandering Aengus
W. B. Yeats

 

W. B. Yeats

Poem for the Day

Posted: 18 January 2013

Time will say nothing but I told you so,
Time only knows the price we have to pay;
If I could tell you I would let you know.

If we should weep when clowns put on their show,
If we should stumble when musicians play,
Time will say nothing but I told you so.

There are no fortunes to be told, although,
Because I love you more than I can say,
If I could tell you I would let you know.

The winds must come from somewhere when they blow,
There must be reasons why the leaves decay;
Time will say nothing but I told you so.

Perhaps the roses really want to grow,
The vision seriously intends to stay;
If I could tell you I would let you know.

Suppose the lions all get up and go,
And all the brooks and soldiers run away;
Will Time say nothing but I told you so?
If I could tell you I would let you know.

If I could Tell You
W. H. Auden

Poem for the Day

Posted: 17 January 2013

"Love seeketh not itself to please,
Nor for itself hath any care,
But for another gives its ease,
And builds a heaven in hell's despair."

So sung a little Clod of Clay,
Trodden with the cattle's feet,
But a Pebble of the brook
Warbled out these metres meet:

"Love seeketh only Self to please,
To bind another to its delight,
Joys in another's loss of ease,
And builds a hell in heaven's despite."

The Clod and the Pebble
William Blake

Is This Healthy?

Posted: 16 January 2013

Am I the only one who thinks that the church has an unhealthy obsession with sex?

The Church of England, for example, seems to have got its cassocks in a twist in deciding whether or not gay men can be ordained as bishops.  The question about whether or not lesbian women can be similarly ordained doesn't arise because women aren't allowed to become bishops anyway, but that is a whole other discussion.

The answer seems to be yes, but with conditions attached.  Well one condition; they must be celibate.  Now how, exactly, the C of E will manage to enforce such a condition is a bit of a puzzle.  CCTV cameras in the vicarage, perhaps?  Chastity vestments?  Answers on a postcard.

The Church of Scotland, on the other hand, is very vocal about the whole idea about whether or not gay men and women should be allowed to marry.  According to the Kirk it is against the teaching of the Bible.  Well, so are many things we no longer find acceptable.

The Bible teaches that divorce is wrong and anyone who marries after being divorced is an adulterer, but nowadays the Kirk, and even its most evangelical ministers, seems to be quite happy to marry divorcees.  The Bible gives a fairly clear message that women have no voice and should remain silent and are subordinate to men, but we have women ministers and have even had a female as Moderator of the General Assembly.  The Bible advocates slavery, albeit advising that you treat your slaves with respect, but it doesnt say it's wrong.

You are, of course, entitled to your own opinion and faith, and I would stand shoulder to shoulder with anyone in order to protect those rights, but surely the world of the has moved on a little, or should we return to the days when we were allowed to sell our daughters into slavery or have someone put to death for working on the Sabbath!  I leave it with you.

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