The Bright Field
I have seen the sun break through
to illuminate a small field
for a while, and gone my way
and forgotten it. But that was the pearl
of great price, the one field that had
the treasure in it. I realize now
that I must give all that I have
to possess it. Life is not hurrying
on to a receding future, nor hankering after
an imagined past. It is the turning
aside like Moses to the miracle
of the lit bush, to a brightness
that seemed as transitory as your youth
once, but is the eternity that awaits you.
One does not have to share R.S.Thomas’s sometimes slightly enigmatic theological preoccupations to find the best of his poems intensely moving in their grave reflectiveness. This one for me says so much about choice and sacrifice, and how difficult it can be for priest, poet or indeed anyone to live undistracted in the vision of the moment.