Wednesday, April 02, 2008

In Memoriam

In honor of Pope John Paul II on this, the third anniversary of his death, I present the following poems: In Memoriam: The Beginning by Alfred Loyd Tennyson and Fulfillment--Apocalypsis (from the second panel of his Roman Triptych) by Pope John Paul II.

Karol Wojtyla, requiescat in pace.
- - - - - -
In Memoriam
by Alfred Lord Tennyson

The Beginning

STRONG Son of God, immortal Love,
Whom we, that have not seen thy face,
By faith, and faith alone, embrace,
Believing where we cannot prove;

Thine are these orbs of light and shade;
Thou madest Life in man and brute;
Thou madest Death; and lo, thy foot
Is on the skull which thou hast made.

Thou wilt not leave us in the dust:
Thou madest man, he knows not why,
He thinks he was not made to die;
And thou hast made him: thou art just.

Thou seemest human and divine,
The highest, holiest manhood, thou:
Our wills are ours, we know not how;
Our wills are ours, to make them thine.

Our little systems have their day;
They have their day and cease to be:
They are but broken lights of thee,
And thou, O Lord, art more than they.

We have but faith: we cannot know;
For knowledge is of things we see;
And yet we trust it comes from thee,
A beam in darkness: let it grow.

Let knowledge grow from more to more,
But more of reverence in us dwell;
That mind and soul, according well,
May make one music as before,

But vaster. We are fools and slight;
We mock thee when we do not fear:
But help thy foolish ones to bear;
Help thy vain worlds to bear thy light.

Forgive what seem’d my sin in me;
What seem’d my worth since I began;
For merit lives from man to man,
And not from man, O Lord, to thee.

Forgive my grief for one removed,
Thy creature, whom I found so fair.
I trust he lives in thee, and there
I find him worthier to be loved.

Forgive these wild and wandering cries,
Confusions of a wasted youth;
Forgive them where they fail in truth,
And in thy wisdom make me wise.
- - - - - -
Roman Tryptich
by Pope John Paul II

Panel 2: Meditations on the Book of Genesis at the Threshold of the Sistine Chapel
Fulfillment--Apocalypse

The End is as invisible as the Beginning.
The universe came forth from the Word,
and returns to the Word.
In the very center of the Sistine Chapel, the artist
depicts this invisible End
in the visible drama of the Judgment --
This invisible End has become visible as the
height of transparency:
omnia nuda et aperta ante oculos Eius!
Matthew's words are here transfigured in the painter's vision:
"Come, you blessed . . . depart from me, y ou accursed . . ."
And so the generations pass --
naked they come into the world and naked they return
to the earthfrom which they were formed.
"From dust you came, and to dust you shall return";
What had shape is now shapeless.
What was alive is now dead.
What was beautiful is now the ugliness of decay.
And yet I do not altogether die,
what is indestructible in me remains!

2 comments:

Tiber Jumper said...

please check out my "Room of Tears" video I put together to honor the memory of John Paul and the election of Pope Benedict.
God bless and Happy Easter.
He is Risen!!
http://crossed-the-tiber.blogspot.com/2007/03/room-of-tears.html

Anonymous said...

I've found a militant atheist if you want to try and help him; he's at:

www.whyihatejesus.blogspot.com/

GBWY, James

Related Posts with Thumbnails