Spiritual warfare: a sonnet with apologies to Hamlet

The “slings and arrows of outrageous fortune”
have nothing on the armour-piercing fury
of a bullet tipped with wormwood gall;
no arbitrary missile this, but launched from
beyond the earth; underworld to surface borne
on wings of fire, brimstone burning, sulphur smelling,
singeing souls and scorching bodies, brandishing
the branding irons of images that sear themselves
into the skull, the mark of the beast tattooed
across the desolate, desecrated landscape.

Try as you might to hide, or to “take arms
against a sea of troubles, and by opposing, end them,”
it will dash you to the ground, drown you in clear air;
this kind can be defeated only by prayer.

About Rosalind C Hughes

Rosalind C Hughes is a priest and author living near the shores of Lake Erie. After growing up in England and Wales, and living briefly in Singapore, she is now settled in Ohio. She serves an Episcopal church just outside Cleveland. Rosalind is the author of A Family Like Mine: Biblical Stories of Love, Loss, and Longing (Upper Room Books, 2020). She loves the lake, misses the ocean, and is finally coming to terms with snow.
This entry was posted in lectionary reflection, poetry and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Spiritual warfare: a sonnet with apologies to Hamlet

  1. heidiannie says:

    And therefore, prayer must be deployed.
    Joining you, my friend, in prayer.

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