Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Seek what they sought. - Basho

De Profundis - a Psalm


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Out of the depths……. I struggle along the bleak and rocky shore so cold and wet, A wild and wailing wind cuts and screams with icy blast; For all life’s ills and miseries of which I’m now beset, An exile I, to a life in torment: a pariah, a leper, outcast. “Scream oh scream you wailing wind! - a bitter freezing hell.” The rocks now screech and shriek of death, despair – eternal damnation! Above the thunderous waves I hear a deathly, tolling bell, It tolls for me and now it tolls for all in condemnation. I slip and fall against a rock, and in the waves I lie, From living hell I cry out loud: “Oh God, where are you now?” “Oh God, my life in hope I give, your love do not deny. In sin I am, I cannot pray, oh God, I know not how.” “In anguish, I beseech you, from the depths of whence I came - Lord, hear my cry! Let it come to you, oh Lord!” “Oh howling wind and soaking rain, release me from my shame! Oh Lord, in your mercy, forgive - for me to be restored!” In misery and freezing cold I lie, my past before my eyes, When evil and sin impaled my heart and innermost soul and mind; “Oh Lord, redeem me now from all my sins and all my lies, So close to death I am, true peace for me to find?” My eyes are dim, a warmth descends – I feel the sun below the clouds, My mind is weak, but thoughts now slowly still – at ease I know; I want no more, the wind is calm, oh Lord, your warmth enshrouds, My eyes I close; I slip away; to me your love you show….. Quia apud Dominum misericordia, et copiosa apud eum redemptio. (For with the Lord there is mercy, and with him is plenteous redemption’) 26 October 2015 This poem was occasioned by reading Psalm 130; “Out of the depths have I cried unto thee” – (in its Latin version: ‘De profundis clamavi ad te, Domine;’). The theme is probably a study of the mind of a severely depressed person, perhaps close to suicide, discovering he/she can pray to God and who finally finds His love – the sun’s light appearing below the clouds may also be of significance as is occasionally reported in the first throes of death by those who ‘return’. ‘For with the Lord there is mercy, and with him is plenteous redemption’. It is up to the reader to take the poem as it stands with or without its religious implications.



© BPF
2015-10-26

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