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Tabb Centenary Year XXII

Five poems by Rev. John B. Tabb.

Good Friday

Behold in every crimson glow
   Of earth and sky and sea,
The Hand that fashioned them doth show
   Love crucified for me.

(p. 344, Quatrains: Religion)

Seeming Failure

O wave upon the strand!
   What urges thee in vain
To lift the baffled hand
   In suppliance again?

“The passion that impels
   The tidal energies
In every bud that swells,
   In every soul that sighs:

“The same that on the cross
   Sustained the dying Christ,
When Love for seeming loss
   Alone was sacrificed.”

May 1903 (p. 118, Life, Death, and Similar Themes: Life)

Helplessness

In patience as in labour must thou be
         A follower of Me,
Whose hands and feet, when most I wrought for thee,
         Were nailed unto a tree.

December 1903 (p. 341, Quatrains: Religion)

On Calvary

In the shadow of the rood
Love and Shame together stood;
Love, that bade Him bear the blame
Of her fallen sister Shame;
Shame, that by the pangs thereof
Bade Him break His heart for Love.

April 1895 (p. 226, Religion: Lent and Easter)

The Tollmen

Lo, Silence, Sleep, and Death
   Await us on the way,
To take of each the tribute breath
   That God himself did pay.

Nor Solomon’s as great,
   Nor Caesar’s strong control,
As his who sits beside his gate
   To take of each the toll.

April 1896 (p. 123, Life, Death, and Similar Themes: Death)

[Today is Good Friday, on which day Christians commemorate the Passion and death of the Lord Jesus Christ. “Seeming Failure”: the strand is the beach; baffled means thwarted. “On Calvary”: a rood is a cross. “The Tollmen”: the first “nor” in the second stanza should be understood as “neither”.]


The references (page number and section) are to The Poetry of Father Tabb, ed. Francis A. Litz, Ph.D. (New York: Dodd, Mead & Company, 1928). All of Tabb's poems published here in the Father Tabb Centenary Year were originally published before 1923.

Biblical references link to the New Advent Bible comprising Bishop Challoner's edition of the Douay-Rheims Bible (English) and the Sixto-Clementine edition of the Vulgate (Latin), since they are the versions which Father Tabb would have used as a Catholic.

The year 2009 is the centenary of the death of Rev. John Banister Tabb, November 19, 1909.

Lane Core Jr. CIW P — Fri. 04/10/09 07:16:28 AM
Categorized as Father Tabb Centenary Year & Literary.

   
         
         

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