We Receive Holy Communion, We Don’t Take It

“Forgive, O Fire, forgive, O Light, the patent,

fraught impurity of we who thus presume

to open unclean lips, availing now

a portal for Your purity. Forgive

the chatter of our blithely fearless crowd

awaiting Your pure body pretty much

the way we stand in any fast-food queue,

considering our neighbors’ faults, puzzling

at those odd few who seem to shiver some

as they approach Your wound. Holy One, allow

that as we near the cup, before the coal

is set upon our trembling tongues, before

we blithely turn and walk again into

our many other failures, all that we

might glimpse, might apprehend something of the fear

with which we should attend this sacrifice,

for which – I gather – we shall never be prepared.”

(A psalm of Isaak in Idiot Psalms (New Poems)  by Scott Cairns, p 82)


See also my blog Communion: A Gift Received Not Taken