On Wednesday before the delectation
Of St. John (in the church of Bonifice).
There a man and woman knelt:
He was wrapped in a grey garment
Just like a pilgrim come to Rome;
And she was fair, honest and wise-
Lovely, coming of good kindred,
Her countenance mistook no man.
Like tides or like hours their voices:
'Now my song is turned to a cry…
I am old, I have no children.'
'All my youth and all my solace,
My forlorn hopes… I live alone,
I have neither daughter nor son,
No one who can share my sorrow.'
'My mirror is now in shadows
My senses are without light,
And I am like the dove who walks
On the grass when her mate is dead.
Tell me, Son, how I may have joy?'
His clothes and his limbs were bloodied;
His face was torn, as were his hands.
'O my Child, why do you suffer
To die with me in poverty,
When I would have made you the heir
Of my land, my house and my crops?'
Then he took the nails from his hands
'Now I will go with you.'
He will be the wreck of our foes
The Master of the Wilderness.
The sea shall arise and stand like a wall,
Though the vale of Josephat hold his doom.
God bring us to the company
Of angels, and peace without end.
Written by John Ballam
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