Poem 85

An original and cheeky opening, evolution as nothing other than an unfolding in time of the original note (Aum?) into a song to satisfy His partiality for music.

Singing’s His weakness. Evolution was nothing else than improving His throat —
Perfecting his original, ancient One-singing phrase by phrase, note by note.

Then in verse 2 proceeding to man as a mirror for God, a mirror in the sonship of the first man’s infinite consciousness. This might also refer to the Ancient One Himself as the first conscious soul. In this verse we switch to hearing God’s own self-communing. Our human divine nature is the very purpose of the whole of creation as Francis gives his Master’s wonderful story of our immortal nature.

When the Beloved heard His own song in man’s first cry
He said, This is my long-sought son who shall never die.

From verse 3 emerges the understanding that God suffers too, in us He undertakes the journey of exile from Himself.

This is he for whom I ordered the suns to stream out on the First Morning,
For whom I became separated in myself and began my wandering.

Verse 4 plays on a saying of Jesus, “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”(Mt18:20) But Francis is using it to emphasize the intensely individual and personal nature of the new revelation. We have new access to the song God is singing through creation.

Where two or more are gathered together for His singing, there He is;
But it is to the lone singer that the Beloved gives His kiss.

But hang on! Who is he and who are we to make such claims? Francis can describe himself as ‘an apprentice threshold-sweeper’. In India a sweeper is the lowest of the menial low. In this world of poetry it is the highest possible aspiration, in fact not an aspiration at all, but a triumphant conclusion to the poem that all springs from Him. Not an intellectual affirmation but the fruit and gift of Love. Love finally makes Him our mirror.

Into your bosom of song, Beloved, I sink deeper and deeper.
Yet in truth I am nothing more than an apprentice threshold-sweeper.

The Beloved is, and I am because of Him.
I would never have been at all but for His whim.

What beloved can equal the Beloved who eternally is —
Whose form is an ocean of glory and whose face is the mirror of bliss?