The Bread Of Tears: A Response To Psalm 80

Psalm 80 is a psalm of lament, a cry for relief uttered from the depth of sorrow and weariness:

Turn us again, O God: shew the light of thy countenance, and we shall be whole.

O Lord God of hosts: how long wilt thou be angry with thy people that prayeth?

Thou feedest them with the bread of tears: and givest them plenteousness of tears to drink.

In this bleak January, well into our third lockdown, with no end in sight, and so many cruelly taken from us by the disease, we all feel what it is to have been given ‘plenteousness of tears to drink’, and I felt it even back in the first lockdown in May when I wrote my own poem of lament in response to this psalm. But the psalm ends with a turning point, ‘ turn us again O Lord’, and so does my poem.

The full set of these poems has now been published as a book David’s Crown which you can buy from UK Amazon Here, or, in North America, it should soon be available from Amazon Here.

There is also going to be a launch event/webinar on Feb 11th at 7pm GMT it will be completely free and you can register for it Here.

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

LXXX Qui regis Israel

Lord hear our sighs and bring us swift release

For we have nothing left to us but tears,

No light, no joy, no strength, no health, no peace,

 

Only the strife, the dread, the strain, the fears

Of these dark times. Oh turn to us again,

Show us once more the mercy of those years

 

When you were forming us. Remember when

You called us out of exile, planted us

As your own vineyard. Was it all in vain

 

The way you tended us and nurtured us

That we might bear good fruit in joy and peace?

We have born bitter fruit, but come to us

 

And help us start again. Come and release

With your right hand the grace we have refused,

Till shadows flee at last, and sorrows cease.

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3 Comments

Filed under imagination

3 responses to “The Bread Of Tears: A Response To Psalm 80

  1. Rossa Lame

    Refreshing truth

  2. bgulland72

    Pertinent to Holocaust Memorial Day too, expressing that historic lament & cry of pain. Thank you…

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