Wednesday, June 28, 2006

That Host upraised against the Sky

"One word whispered, strange, across the night,
Deeper than any wireless message thrilled
The soundless voice of Aquin, one deep chord
Sustaining that light song with undertones
Profound as death, in the innermost heart of the world:
Visus, tactus, gustus, in te fallitur.
Sed auditu solo tuto creditur."

"Time and Space
Dissolved... Two thousand years ago, this Act,
Two Thousand Years ago, this Act,
On earth (and in the heavens, before all worlds);
Foreshadowed His own passion to create,
Life that might share His own on high at last,
And, by His own transfiguring entrance here,
Ennoble the dark Nature He had made,
Stooping to Man, that men might raise to God.
There, as that Host, upraised against the sky,
Bowed every head, I saw ten thousend shrines,
Ten thousand altars, in the self-same Act
Made one, and shadowing forth that Act in heaven
Before which all those heavenly armies kneel...
All these and more made one by that one sign,
One thin white disk upraised against the sky,
There, in one strict concentring point at last,
Closed all the thoughts and aims of earth and heaven,
Shone the one signal that could never change,
The ultimate sea-mark of our voyaging souls.
Behind that Act, two thousand years ago
On earth, and in the heavens before all worlds,
Stood, and for ever stands, the eternal Christ,
Whose Presence is not separate from His Act,
Because in Him, Substance and Will are one,
Breaking that Bread whereof His Body was made,
In union and communion with man's own;
A sacramental sign, earth's common Bread,
Bread of a thousand grains, compact in one,
To feed that flesh wherewith the soul of Christ,
Was clothed on earth, as man's own soul is clothed;
And, as the living soul of man on earth
Is here and now incorporate into Christ,
Becomes His Body anew.
Time, Space dissolved."

Alfred Noyes

No comments: