I wrote this poem the day after I received the initial diagnosis of primary cancer in my bowel with secondaries in the lymph nodes and spots on my liver. The surgeon had told me they would not operate ‘at this stage’, and that my case was being taken over by the Oncologist. I then had a ten day wait before I would discover the spots are too extensive in the liver to be successfully removed and that treatment would be palliative. I have always been moved by the tune Hamabe no uta , a cello solo by Mischa Maisky on the album Silent Woods. The melody seemed to capture my darkness, the Lord’s response and the rest I discovered in His care. By the time Bronwen and I met the Oncologist we had discovered a profound sense of peace and were not at all shattered by the prognosis. I hope some of you might get strength from these words.
(set to the tune:Â “Hamabe no uta” by NaritaÂ ) Click on the media player to hear the tune in the background as you read the words.
Light in my long night
My soul in distress cried aloud in dread,
Oh my God, I feel so alone;
The night is so cold, and I canâ€™t see ahead
And my strength is almost gone.
Where is the joy I knew when
My faith was fresh and young?
So dark! Are You there? How have I sinned? Whatâ€™s wrong?
Rend the heavens and speak again.
My child, you are safe in my powerful hand
Do not fret, but rest in my care
My Word is your rock, what you feel is sand,
I am with you everywhere.
My way is in the tempest
My purpose to refine.
And when, just like gold, you are purified
Iâ€™ll in you be glorified.
Now, shut in with God, I have found new peace,
Though the storm has yet to subside.
In midst of my foes Heâ€™s prepared a feast,
And my soul is satisfied.
Not dark, nor pain, nor peril,
Can separate me from
The love of my Saviour, Redeemer, Friend,
Whoâ€™s restored to me my song