John will lead many people in Israel to turn back to the Lord their God. He will go ahead of the Lord with the same power and spirit that Elijah had” Luke 1:16,17
Led by bright, lesser lights
We may say given these shorter days, with light seemingly at a premium, that there is not enough light. With less around it may be hard to notice and appreciate other forms of lesserlight. Or it may be that such lack is the one thing that makes us sit up and look around, now alive to variation and so led to discover Source. Eliot brings in the Greater Light, eastern light, twilight, moon light, star light, moth light, glowlight and ultimately Light Invisible.
This lovely poem gradually recalibrates our eyesight, turning our heads and hearts towards what is always and forever there, seen and unseen, pervasive, expansive and holding and, for Elizabeth and Zechariah, burning oh so much brighter now. Promises can be as yet unfulfilled, but may also provide enough light to take an intial step towards the Lord.
O Light Invisible, we praise Thee!
Too bright for mortal vision.
O Greater Light, we praise Thee for the less;
The eastern light our spires touch at morning,
The light that slants upon our western doors at evening,
The twilight over stagnant pools at batflight,
Moon light and star light, owl and moth light,
Glow-worm glowlight on a grassblade.
O Light Invisible, we worship Thee!