Last night was the annual Men's Curry Evening. There was a good number of men from the Village Church and a good number of men not from the Village Church. There was curry and there was beer. But there was also poetry! Yesterday was World Poetry Day and so it felt fitting to read a poem to the men. I read a poem called Divine Comedy by Glen Scrivener. Here it is to read and reflect on...
What is life? What kind of tale?
Comedy or tragic fail?
Not, is life funny, it's mostly not,
But is it hopeful? What's the plot?
The classic tragedy's a frown;
You travel up then tumble down.
In turn, a comedy's a smile;
You plumb the depths but end in style.
It's not about the laughter or pain,
It's all about the final frame.
Flick to the end and simply question:
Is there a wedding or a funeral procession?
That's the difference, now we ask:
What should be the actor's mask?
In this world, what story's sold?
Is the happy ending told?
No, here's the pattern:
Each wretch stumbles up the compost heap,
Then tumbles down to loneliness and loss,
But painted thinly, this the gloss,
A glistening hedonist directive:
Make attainment your objective.
Grasp and grab and climb and take,
Then perish, never more to wake.
Your life is tragic, first to last,
No matter how the middle's cast.
We're biological machines,
Reading glossy magazines.
So swill your latte, watch the clock,
As time eeks out, tick tock, tick tock.
Unless one story comes in view,
Unless the comedy is true.
The author written in to twist the plot,
Within our tangled midst,
To plumb the tragedy and gloom,
Kill death by dying, split the tomb.
And by this anti-entropy,
To reek sublime catastrophe.
Now through the valley, death destroyed,
He pioneers a cosmic joy.
Beside this tale, there's only sorrow,
He alone secures tomorrow.
Hope for earthed, embodied living,
Future righted, wrongs forgiven.
You see, the tragedy is vain,
Begins in pride and ends in pain.
Forsake this desperate ever after,
Turn instead to Easter laughter.
The men were invited to come along to the Village Church this Easter - to our Good Friday service at 10am on Friday 19th April and / or to our Easter Sunday service at 10:30am on Sunday 21st April. Let's pray that some of them come...