A Footnote To All Prayers

He whom I bow to only knows to whom I bow
When I attempt the ineffable Name, murmuring Thou,
And dream of Pheidian fancies and embrace in heart
Symbols (I know) which cannot be the thing Thou art.
Thus always, taken at their word, all prayers blaspheme
Worshiping with frail images a folk-lore dream,
And all men in their praying, self-deceived, address
The coinage of their own unquiet thoughts, unless
Thou in magnetic mercy to Thyself divert
Our arrows, aimed unskillfully, beyond desert;
And all men are idolaters, crying unheard
To a deaf idol
, if Thou take them at their word.
Take not, O Lord, our literal sense. Lord, in thy great
Unbroken speech our limping metaphor translate.

[A Footnote To All Prayers – C.S. Lewis]


3 Responses to “A Footnote To All Prayers”

  1. 1 kathryn April 30, 2007 at 4:41 am

    i love ‘magnetic mercy’. . . wow.

  2. 2 kirsty April 30, 2007 at 10:46 pm

    i stole this to put on my myspace….. its good


  3. 3 emmsy April 30, 2007 at 10:50 pm

    Feel free… not my words anyway! You’re finished now?! So come see me!!

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