LIGHT-CENTERED

Shobha, look, beautiful it is!
Yeah Sulekha! There’s a sense of homecoming and peace that’s almost visible!
Don’t forget the light! It sort of draws attention with its brilliance!
Of course! Reminds me of two things.
What two things?
Newman’s words that became a favorite comforting hymn. Guess it?
Of course. Lead Kindly Light!
Yes and the other is Portia’s speech in Merchant of Venice.
The quality of mercy discourse?
Nope, the one about a candle when she returns home.
Hmmm , I remember it! She compares the light of candle and that of the moon!
Right. I never forgot it!

*In 1833, the young theologian and Anglican vicar John Henry Newman (1801-90) was traveling in the Mediterranean when he was struck down by a fever that nearly killed him. ‘My servant thought I was dying and begged for my last directions,’ he recalled in his autobiography. ‘I gave them as he wished, but I said, “I shall not die, for I have not sinned against light.”‘ Newman recovered slowly, but felt desperately homesick. On the way back to England, he took an orange boat from Palermo to Marseilles which was becalmed in the Straits of Bonifacio. Thus stranded, in an exhausted and emotional state, Newman was impelled to write this verse as a meditative poem called ‘The Pillar of the Cloud’, expressive of his longing for consoling Christian certainties in an age of mounting doubt.
*PORTIA: That light we see is burning in my hall.
How far that little candle throws his beams!
So shines a good deed in a naughty world.
NERISSA: When the moon shone, we did not see the candle.
PORTIA: So doth the greater glory dim the less:
A substitute shines brightly as a king
Until a king be by, and then his state
Empties itself, as doth an inland brook
Into the main of waters. Music! hark! (MERCHANT OF VENICE ACT 5 SCENE 1)
*Friday Fictioneers is talented group of enthusiasts penning down a story, a poem, a prose, etc., expressing their heart about a photo prompt, every week. Thanks for this week’s photo prompt ©Dale Rogerson

12 thoughts on “LIGHT-CENTERED

  1. Lyrics

    1. Lead, kindly Light, amid th’encircling gloom;

    Lead thou me on!

    The night is dark, and I am far from home;

    Lead thou me on!

    Keep thou my feet; I do not ask to see

    The distant scene—one step enough for me.

    2. I was not ever thus, nor pray’d that thou

    Shouldst lead me on.

    I loved to choose and see my path; but now,

    Lead thou me on!

    I loved the garish day, and, spite of fears,

    Pride ruled my will. Remember not past years.

    3. So long thy pow’r hath blest me, sure it still

    Will lead me on

    O’er moor and fen, o’er crag and torrent, till

    The night is gone.

    And with the morn those angel faces smile,

    Which I have loved long since, and lost awhile!

    Text: John Henry Newman, 1801–1890

    Music: John B. Dykes, 1823–1876

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love that song… when I was little, my Mom used to quote the poem… all I can remember now is “Lead Kindly light amid the encircling gloom, lead thou me on…”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I found them, Thanks for posting these, too. They are so beautiful. I can almost hear my mom’s voice as she would recite it, with lots of inflections.

    Liked by 1 person

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