I’ve recently come across the poet Geoffrey Hill. He’s an atheist, but I find some of his ‘religious’ poems full of beauty and insight, and so wonderfully constructed they make my spirit sing!
What is there in my heart that you should sue
so fiercely for its love? What kind of care
brings you as though a stranger to my door
through the long night and in the icy dew
seeking the heart that will not harbour you,
that keeps itself religiously secure?
At this dark solstice filled with frost and fire
your passion’s ancient wounds must bleed anew.
So many nights the angel of my house
has fed such urgent comfort through a dream,
whispered ‘your lord is coming, he is close’
that I have drowsed half-faithful for a time
bathed in pure tones of promise and remorse:
‘tomorrow I shall wake to welcome him.’
(After Lope de Vega)