Saturday, February 28, 2009

What we'll be singing tomorrow

Wilt thou forgive that sin, where I begun,
which is my sin, though it were done before?
Wilt thou forgive those sins through which I run,
and do run still, though still I do deplore?
When thou has done, thou has not done, for I have more.

Wilt thou forgive that sin, by which I won
others to sin, and made my sin their door?
Wilt thou forgive that sin which I did shun
a year or two, but wallowed in a score?
When thou has done, thou hast not done, for I have more.

I have a sin of fear that when I’ve spun
my last thread, I shall perish on the shore;
Swear by thyself, that at my death thy Son
shall shine as he shines now, and heretofore.
And having done, that thou hast done, I fear no more.
-John Donne (1573-1631)

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

We sang it for Ash Wednesday. This is the second time I've introduced it to a choir. They hate it at first, and then cannot get it out of their heads.. Hope you used p.143 in the 82 book.. Its not easy, but it will grab your heart.
Blessings,
Grandmother in SC

Anonymous said...

Humble apologies.. This morning was 143, the Donne one is 140.....
Grandmother in SC

Sue said...

We sang this on Ash Wednesday, for the first time, too. Being in the choir gave me the advantage of practicing it beforehand, so I hope that the congregation wasn't so preoccupied with trying to sing such an awkward tune that it missed the words. The words are so poignant and express exactly how I feel each Sunday when I'm confessing the same sin, seemingly for the hundredth time.

And it's so odd--I haven't been able to get it out of my head for five days now.

"Wilt thou forgive...?" And the answer is... "Yes." What a wonderful God we have!

Sue Martinez