Wrapped up in the silk that shines silver in moonlight,
the cycle of life will go on day by day.
The spider devours what is needed by nature;
for life to exist death must also hold sway.
The cancer that kills through an act of mutation,
the building of love, the destruction and strife;
the things labelled ‘evil’ are part of creation,
the earth’s moving surface is needful for life.
Our eyes are half open to vast constellations,
are blind to the particles light can’t resolve,
but in them and through them the mystery beyond us:
the one we name ‘God’ makes our wisdom dissolve;
for on through our living and final destruction,
beyond deep imagining, artists might hold,
this ‘God’, this enigma, the source of our being
will love through eternity, comfort, enfold.
Andrew E Pratt (born 1948)
Words © 2015 Stainer & Bell Ltd, London, England, http://www.stainer.co.uk.
Please include any reproduction for local church use on your CCL Licence returns. All wider and any commercial use requires prior application to Stainer & Bell Ltd.
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Suggested tune: STREETS OF LAREDO
At a Hymn Society Conference some years ago I was asked for a hymn in response to ‘All things bright and beautiful’ which took ‘bad’ things seriously, things like cancer. This exploration of creation of ‘bad things’, technically theodicy, followed.
Published in More than hymns