Saturday, April 19, 2008

Chance, 1996-2008

Funeral Blues
W. H. Auden

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling on the sky the message He Is Dead,
Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.

He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last for ever: I was wrong.

The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood;
For nothing now can ever come to any good.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

It's Been a While

I haven't blogged in a while.  It's for good reason.  While I could say it's because I've been busy (and that's a lot of it), it's not the only reason.  I have been questioning a lot of things.  Why is it that those of us who claim we are a part of the Kingdom of God do not believe it to be THE Reality, but rather the ideal?  Why do we describe God's salvific work in sports related terms (i.e. "winning souls")?  What happens when you or your church doesn't have a winning season (that is, at least 50 wins and 50 losses)?  What happens if your church is more interested not drinking than in feeding the hungry?  Why didn't Christ say, "Go into all the world and make 20 disciples every year."?  It would've made everything easier.  For a church that's so interested in not being associated with anything that smacks of works righteousness, we love to quantify our works.  But hey, what are you going to do?

I don't know why, but I've been thinking about Elvis Costello's "God's Comic." Maybe God should've given the world to the monkeys after all. Here are the lyrics:

I wish you'd known me when I was alive, I was a funny feller

The crowd would hoot and holler for more

I wore a drunk's red nose for applause

Oh yes I was a comical priest

"With a joke for the flock and a hand up your fleece"

Drooling the drink and the lipstick and greasepaint

Down the cardboard front of my dirty dog-collar


Now I'm dead, now I'm dead, now I'm dead,

now I'm dead, now I'm dead

And I'm going on to meet my reward

I was scared, I was scared, I was scared, I was scared

He might of never heard God's Comic


So there he was on a water-bed

Drinking a cola of a mystery brand

Reading an airport novelette, listening to

Andrew Lloyd-Webber's "Requiem"

He said, before it had really begun, "I prefer the one about my son"

"I've been wading through all this unbelievable

junk and wondering if I should have given

the world to the monkeys"




I'm going to take a little trip down Paradise's

endless shores

They say that travel broadens the mind, till you

can't get your head out of doors


I'm sitting here on the top of the world

I hang around in the longest night

Until each beast has gone bed and then I say

"God bless" and turn out the light

While you lie in the dark, afraid to breathe and

you beg and you promise

And you bargain and you plead

Sometimes you confuse me with Santa Claus

It's the big white beard I suppose

I'm going up to the pole, where you folks die of cold

I might be gone for a while if you need me


Now I'm dead, now I'm dead, now I'm dead,

now I'm dead, now I'm dead and you're all

going on to meet your reward


Are you scared? Are you scared? Are you scared? Are you scared?

You might have never heard, but God's comic