Dust

by Nancy Coombs
St. Jude’s (Oakville)

“Shall the dust give thanks unto thee: or shall it declare thy truth?”
(The Book of Common Prayer 1662, Psalm 30.10)


Trampled upon and much despised, we are the dust, the unbaptized.
What germs — or blood — will man dictate? Ignored while scorned, we mourn but wait.
United not, as winds disperse ‘cross plains and hills, we shall traverse.
Dust has no chance to stay or flee. Mercy! Save us from misery.
Dust-to-dust foretells our place. Christ, Lord of all, show us thy face. 

Man’s seed, we’ll grow — yet it can’t last in fallowed fields, forlorn outcast.
Bodies emerged await return, fate’s ashes in life’s golden urn.
Fine purpose, true, of us Earth’s made; we’ve not been loved, nor much parlayed.
We hope for more — might dust He need, a noble role that God’s decreed?
Dust-to-dust foretells our place. Christ, Lord of all, show us thy face.

Disciples shake us off their feet — rejected dust, Lord’s preaching fleet.
But still we wait: choose us, our Lord! Incarnate Love, O much implored.
Grasping the blind man’s woes, Christ kneels: He uses dust, makes mud and heals.
He shined His Light — the world can see through dust; we bask in liberty.
We give thanks unto thee, God’s grace. Christ, Lord of all, is heaven’s embrace.