Dragon-slaying for beginners

(Audio poem for St George’s day, 23rd April)

Red cross on white, it’s St George’s Day
What, that’s not yet been said, can I say?
Of several nations the proud patron saint
What kind of picture-poem will I here paint?
One thing for starters it seems made him brave:
Faith in the fella who rose from the grave
That surely helped him not faint from the shock
Of facing a Roman executioner’s block
Then there’s the legend: a dragon, breathing fire
Slaying that monster? That’s got to inspire
(It’s not every day a bloke gets out of bed
And takes on a beast, that by close of play’s dead)
Makes me think, little old me, here today
What kind of dragons, am I going to slay?
Above all the noise and furore and din
Of life in the world, I’m looking within
For dragons… That bad thing that haunts me with fear?
Can’t beat God’s presence for bringing peace near
Plagued by some monsters of cruel guilt and shame?
Promise of Jesus: you won’t be the same
Nothing’s as strong as his power to assuage
Demons of anger and envy and rage
When the fierce fire of those dragons is spent
You can rest, you’ll be blessed – at peace, and content

For BBC local radio.

Image by Dimitris Vetsikas from Pixabay

Holy Saturday

Once your suffering was over, and you’d breathed your final breath
Weight of all our sin upon you, spent,absorbed, in this your death
As the evening slow encompassed, all that dark despondent day
Joseph, secret follower came, and took your body down, away
Wrapped it in a linen shroud, with fragrant spices, aloes, myrrh
Laid it in a new-cut tomb, no inkling what would next occur
Jesus, lamp and light of all, conceived by grace, in virgin womb
Now embraced by cool and darkness, silent in the virgin tomb
Jesus, with those first disciples, we now watch and wait with you
Folded in the stillness here, not knowing yet what God will do