With far-off murk across the haunted bay
shrouding Cuthbert’s myth-soaked rocky isle,
I trudge along the empty pilgrim way
‘gainst furious wind that makes each breath a trial.
The long low island reaches out ahead -
half-seen as wind whips ice towards my face -
made blessed by better men with humbler tread
than I, who come to steal hard-won grace.
The church appears amid the ancient stones,
long since thrown down by futile earthly might,
where ancient prayers in ancient priestly tones
were sung by men who sought the truest light.
Like those who came this way in ages past
At altar rail my rest awaits at last.