Run, Shepherds, Run
By L. William Countryman
Harrisburg: Morehouse Publishing, 2005
Poet and priest William Countryman would hope that readers considering this short collection of poetry – both recent and traditional, would take up his advice:
…if you have a vague sense that
something better is possible,
that Christmas may have something better to say
to real people living amid the real struggles,
and use this new resource as part of daily devotional reading during Advent and the twelve days of Christmas. Poetry is offered to take the reader through to the Feast of the Epiphany on 6 January.
Poets featured include Emily Dickinson, John Donne, Gerald Manley Hopkins, Alfred Tennyson and WB Yeats as well as Australian and New Zealand writers Judith Wright, Elizabeth Smith, Bruce Dawe and Colin Gibson.
Countryman, a professor in Biblical Studies at the Church Divinity School of the Pacific in Berkeley, California offers a helpful but short reflection prior to each poem.
With the potential for many of the poems to have usefulness as Calls to Worship or reflections as God’s people gather each week, Run, Shepherds, Run will prove itself a worthy addition to the Advent/Christmas resources on offer.