Knights of the Pain Table

A Camelot for Sufferers of Chronic Pain

To Hold Infinity in the Palm of Your Hand – Shelley by Francis Thompson


“Know you what it is to be a child? It is to be something very different from the man of to-day.   It is to have a spirit yet streaming from the waters of baptism;   it is to believe in love,  to believe in loveliness,  to believe in belief;   it is to be so little that the elves can reach to whisper in your ear;   it is to turn pumpkins into coaches, and mice into horses, lowness into loftiness, and nothing into everything, for each child has its fairy godmother in its own soul;   it is to live in a nutshell and to count yourself the king of infinite space;
it is

To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
And eternity in an hour;”

~ From Shelley:  An Essay

We begin as a child with children’s eyes.  Then as we grow, we say goodbye and leave pieces of us behind.

But our hearts do not forget.

Sometimes it takes tragedy and great loss for us to hear an old friend, “our heart.”   As the heart speaks, we begin to search for those long forgotten pieces that are part of us.

To survive continuous suffering it is wise to find the “world in a grain of sand”, once again.

About Francis Thompson

Francis Thompson (16 December 1859 – 13 November 1907) was an English poet and ascetic.  He desperately wanted to be a writer.  He endured many years of destitution, which left him very ill.   Then kindness found him, through the editor of a magazine that believed in his work.   Now, under a doctor’s care and eating once again, he was able to overcome his opium addiction and ill health.  He was never again without food, clothing or shelter due to the compassion of his new friend.

Francis began to write with newfound friends supporting him.  Even though he had success, the toll on his body was too much and he died from tuberculosis, at the age of 48.

The young J.R.R. Tolkien, was an admirer of Francis Thompson’s writings and later said that it was an important influence on his own writing.   J.R.R. Tolkien wrote the classic story, “Lord of the Rings”.  The novel is about Frodo, a hobbit, who is given a dangerous quest with a special ring.   He is small but his heart holds the greatest courage of all.

Dear Knights I hope that if you are lost; a stranger with the kindest heart finds thee to guide you home.

Lady Sharon
Scribe of Camelot

About The Author


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