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  • Writer's pictureGreg Dover

Curations: The Beginning

I'm trying something different.

Instead of writing my words about a word (as I have for the past year and a half), each week I'd like to share something I've found to be meaningful. It might be a poem, a prayer, a piece of visual art, a song...and sometimes a combination of these! And I'll invite you to reflect on them with me, prompting that reflection with some questions and/or comments.


This past Sunday - Easter Sunday - I preached on the resurrection story from Luke's Gospel, in which the women come to the tomb "at early dawn."

As I wrote the sermon, I kept coming back to this poem by Maggie Smith, called "How Dark the Beginning." (You can hear the poet read it here.)

All we ever talk of is light— let there be light, there was light then, good light—but what I consider dawn is darker than all that. So many hours between the day receding and what we recognize as morning, the sun cresting like a wave that won’t break over us—as if  light were protective, as if  no hearts were flayed, no bodies broken on a day like today. In any film, the sunrise tells us everything will be all right. Danger wouldn’t dare show up now, dragging its shadow across the screen. We talk so much of  light, please let me speak on behalf of  the good dark. Let us talk more of how dark the beginning of a day is.

As I mentioned in the sermon, because the women come to the tomb at first light (i.e. "at early dawn"), that means that whatever God did, God did in the dark.

  • How would you define or describe "the good dark"? What does that mean to you?

  • What has been an experience of "the good dark" for you?

  • Have you ever experienced the dawning of something new, but which began in the dark?

I hope you'll take a moment to reflect on this poem. Maybe even to get up early one morning, to see exactly how dark the beginning of a day is...and hopefully to encounter the presence of God there, too.


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