If the lost word is lost, if the spent word is spent
If the unheard, unspoken
Word is unspoken, unheard;
Still is the unspoken word, the Word unheard,
The Word without a word, the Word within
The world and for the world;
And the light shone in darkness and
Against the Word the unstilled world still whirled
About the centre of the silent Word.
(Ash Wednesday, T.S. Eliot)
â€œThen Pilate took Jesus and had Him flogged. The soldiers also twisted together a crown of thorns, put it on His head, and threw a purple robe around Him. And they repeatedly came up to Him and said, â€œHail, King of the Jews!â€ and were slapping His face.
Pilate went outside again and said to them, â€œLook, Iâ€™m bringing Him outside to you to let you know I find no grounds for charging Him.â€
Then Jesus came out wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. Pilate said to them, â€œHere is the man!â€
When the chief priests and the temple police saw Him, they shouted, â€œCrucify! Crucify!â€ Pilate responded, â€œTake Him and crucify Him yourselves, for I find no grounds for charging Him.â€
â€œWe have a law,â€ the Jews replied to him, â€œand according to that law He must die, because He made Himself the Son of God.â€
When Pilate heard this statement, he was more afraid than ever. He went back into the headquarters and asked Jesus, â€œWhere are You from?â€ But Jesus did not give him an answer.â€ (John 19:1-9 HCSB)
Some poems have their own gravitational field that ensures you keep orbiting back at specific times or through certain circumstances. It’s nearly Easter, it’s the time for reading Ash Wednesday.
What I notice this time is that even the poetic density of Eliot’s description can’t comprehend the questions, the cries, and the silence, as the world seeks words with which to bind the Word.