priest, poet

“Receive this Bible as a sign . . .” The Book of Common Prayer, 534

Younger than I by nearly forty years,
He stands for examination, then kneels,
The bishop laying hands upon the head
Of one who prays for strength to rise again,
Holding on tight to a Bible, the gift
A bishop gives to all whom God has called
To preach the Word and offer bread and wine.

Here in the pews, near three score years and ten,
I see myself—and not—in that young man,
For I was also called, ordained, my gift
Not given by a bishop but a voice
That left me with the silence of the page
And language from a common lexicon,
The Holy Spirit blessing grape and grain.

David Middleton

Until his retirement in June of 2010, David Middleton served for thirty-three years as Professor of English at Nicholls State University in Thibodaux, Louisiana, and he is now the first Poet in Residence Emeritus at Nicholls. Middleton’s books of verse include The Burning Fields and Beyond the Chandeleurs. He has been published extensively in places such as The Anglican Theological Review, The Southern Review, The Sewanee Review, Chronicles, Louisiana Literature, The Formalist, and has served as poetry editor for The Classical Outlook, Modern Age, and Anglican Theological Review.

'Ordinations' has 1 comment

  1. August 5, 2019 @ 2:33 pm Glenn

    A well-wrought poem of beauty and depth, which is what one who follows David Middleton’s work has come to expect.


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