The Power of a Poem

At our Clergy Study Day in November, we were treated to a recital of a poem written especially for the occasion by Breannah Holton, the Kings School Poet Laureate currently in her final year of study at the school.  

The poem, entitled Nature knows His Name was inspired by Breannah's personal faith as well as the story of a twelve year old Jesus being left behind in Jerusalem after the Passover feast, and being found in the Temple three days later by his parents, engaged in deep conversation with the teachers of the faith. (Luke 2:41) 

Nature Knows His Name. 

Creases in the fold of the sky, 
Jesus doesn't hide away from those. 
The hidden matters of the mind reflected within the eyes, 
Jesus doesn't hide away from those. 
The delicate sobs half silent and exhausted sighs, 
Jesus doesn't hide away from those. 
Resurrected and victorious, from dirt he rose, 
Jesus is where beauty and truth and living water flows. 
He doesn't hide away from those, 
who need, plead, he will bleed for them. 
And where the river flows, where the spirit is,  
where truth thrives and flourishes,  
and in the temple there is no day or dusk,  
the call of God is upon all of us. 
He is in the temple calling us back to Him 
He is on the mountain of Zion, but can also reside within. 
Where shall I look, where shall I go? 
Where do these bellies of living water flow? 
Where can I find this love, that knows no bounds and  
administers forgiveness? 
Surely you know He is in the Temple,  
surely you know he is at His Father's business.


The study day was focused on the Growing Faith Adventure, the Church of England’s initiative which seeks to put children, young people and families instinctively at the heart of the mission and ministry of the Church. Like Jesus in the Temple, we find that faith grows in children and young people and in adults too, when the church works in partnership with schools and families, with children and young people taking an active part in creating the world they want to live in, specifically through the lens of the Christian faith.  

For Breannah this makes perfect sense, ‘it's about the idea that God fits into everything’ she says; ‘So often we can exclude God, but he created the universe, he created us and so we have to be able to see him in everything. Even when I leave him out, he is still there.’ 

Breannah says her poetry is for all ages, with young people more likely to listen to something they can relate to and the importance of seeing scripture in a different light.  ‘Sometimes we have read a passage so many times we may overlook something but seeing it through the eyes of a young person can give us a fresh insight that gets to the heart of it’ said the Revd Michelle Dalliston, Vicar of Peterborough. 

This was definitely what was felt in the Cathedral when the poem was delivered at the Study Day. The Revd Michael Moore, Vicar of St Mary’s in Peterborough who attended the study day said ‘I started to listen with my eyes open. Then I had to close them so that I could listen with my whole being. The words cascaded over me so that I could actually feel each one. God's Holy Spirit flowed over everyone in the cathedral at that moment as we listened to it cascading through the poem.’ 

Breannah hopes that her role as Poet Laureate for Kings will be taken on by some of the younger poets in the school when she moves on next year.  We are very grateful to her for her inspiring poem and hope to that its impact has a lasting effect on the way our parishes include the voices of all ages in their worship and fellowship.  

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