Monday, July 25, 2016

David Wright

David Wright is a poet born in central Illinois. He is the author of two poetry collections — the most recent of which is The Small Books of Bach (2014, Wipf and Stock). As an academic he has taught at University of Illinois, Wheaton College, and Richland Community College, and now teaches at Monmouth College — all of which are in Illinois.

He has also completed a book of hymns entitled A Field of Voices, with the music composed by James E. Clemens. The following poem is from his 2003 book, A Liturgy for Stones.

Veni, Sancte Spiritus

When the broken hearted spirit arrives, no one knows
how it enters the room, what to call the groaning ghost.

It could be flame, could be wind, could be song, or syllables
arcing on lips like sparks, arching tongues
to unfamiliar diction, speech so inarticulate and pure.

Wind, flame, words rush over us,
out of us, in a humiliating gush,
until the air bears the sounds of wings.

A dove hovers, trapped in our room,
its rounded, translucent blue head
dazed against the windows.

God is a small, brown-grey, beautiful bird
beating wings against unbreachable glass?

The comforter’s voice vibrates in the spirit-drunk:
Shut up and listen. Lift up the sash.

Let the dove loose, a flame to singe the streets and sky.

Let untamed language fall on a thousand unsuspecting tongues.

Posted with permission of the poet.

Entry written by D.S. Martin. His latest poetry collection, Conspiracy of Light: Poems Inspired by the Legacy of C.S. Lewis, is available from Wipf & Stock as is his earlier award-winning collection, Poiema.