For the Unseen; A Sonnet For Carers

To bear the burden their belovèd bears,

I wrote this poem five years ago for a service in Ely Cathedral celebrating the work of carers, but now, in the midst of this pandemic, I send it out again, thinking this time of the myriad care workers, the NHS frontline staff, the neighbours leaving food at doorsteps, the partners and families of those in self-isolation, all who are tending, even from a distance and over a screen to the needs of their loved ones. This goes out especially to ‘The patient partners lifting up a cross/to bear the burden their beloved bears’


As usual you can hear me read the poem by clicking on the title or the ‘play’ button.

A Sonnet For The Unseen


So much goes unseen and stays unsaid,

So much that carers keep within their hearts;

The children who get parents out of bed,

Already tired before their school day starts,

The neighbours who keep giving up their time,

To add a daily round of extra care,

Veronicas who cleanse the sweat and grime,

And those whose gift is simply being there,

The patient partners lifting up a cross

To bear the burden their belovèd bears,

Who ease each other through the pain and loss

And feel that no one sees, and no one cares.

But there is One to hear, to feel, to see

And He will say ‘ye did it unto me’.


Filed under imagination

19 responses to “For the Unseen; A Sonnet For Carers

  1. Susan Adams

    Thank you Malcolm, I attended a weekend you led at Pleshey a while ago.. so I do enjoy your writing. I am at present 24/7 – as they say – carer for my 98 yr old Mother in Law – a challenge at the best of times… but I look at the cross and know I have to keep giving and going. Susan Adams.


  2. Marie Bomyer

    In would like to post the Carers poem on our Facebook page but am not sure if you would be happy for me to do that.
    It is thought-provoking and would be an interesting additional resource.

  3. Debbie Cornelius

    Thanks for this beautiful sonnet. I am currently a carer for my father and before that my mother and my grandmother and I am exhausted. It is the best encouragement I have had so far to stay the course. I just recently connected with your website on a recommendation from Steve Bell. What a treasure and today what a blessing. You are a master wordsmith. Thanks for sharing your gifts in service to others. Peace and Wellness to you.

    • malcolmguite

      Thanks Debbie I’m so glad you found this sonnet encouraging. It was written for people just like you! Malcolm

  4. thank you – very beautiful

  5. Well that certainly hits the mark! It was hard enough before lockdown but now there is no leeway. Fortunately some of us do have God. Must be so hard for those who don’t.

  6. As a carer I really appreciate this. Thank you.

  7. Malcom,
    Thank you for this sonnet. Are we allowed To share these with others such as on Facebook?

  8. Claire Adare

    Thank you.
    My sister and I just admiited our 99 yr. old mother to hospice care today. We’re sitting in her room and I shared this with my sister.

  9. Barbara Parry

    These posts are so up-lifting: like CS Lewis’ BBC broadcasts during WWII (that formed the basis of his book, Mere Christianity).

  10. Reblogged this on Pastor Michael Moore's Blog and commented:
    Thank you, Malcolm!

  11. Katharine Townsend

    Thank you so much. I just needed to be reminded if that.

  12. Good on you and thanks for sharing! You’re a poet and didn’t know it 😂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.