Poems

On Ash Wednesday

Feb 2018    

Ash Wednesday – what calls the soul to church
When songs and stained glass cede to silence and grey?
When music is solemn and slow as a dirge,
Why go then to church, on Ash Wednesday?

What thought bears the soul to encounter this night
When Easter victorious seems eons away?
When pews languish empty, and dim-filled with light,
Why go then to church, when it seems so to weigh?

A hunger not sated with noodles or rice;
A debt that we owe, unable to pay;
A longing to see clear through sin-clouded eyes;
A clarion “Go”, not a trembling stay –

Quiet. Repentance. Ashes. Tears.
A pastoral touch, a pause to pray;
Calmly we rise. The dark vision clears;
Lent has begun. This is the first day.

In 40 days’ time hallelujahs will ring;
Seven days before, green palms will sway.
Joyful seasons will come; for now let us bring
Home the stillness of Ash Wednesday.

Grace Toh –
is the Editor of Methodist Message and a member of Kampong Kapor Methodist Church. She is drawn to the stillness of Ash Wednesday remembrances.

Background picture by czarny_bez/Bigstock.com

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