In the prison of my mind my madness kept me wholly chained
So I knew not kith nor kindred, nor cared whereabouts I dwelt.
My strength increased by tenfold when my anger was enflamed
These twins – anger and madness – all I felt.
Like my brother-beasts I ravened, cutting my own skin to shreds
Just to savour how my blood ran down in rivulets of gore.
Like a beast all men disowned me: from all men I therefore fled
My rank hair now the only clothes I wore.
When asleep they came and chained me once. I woke and smashed them through.
My captors ran! My tenfold strength made me a dreaded foe.
Then my demons came tormenting me: which devil’s work they knew.
They usurped my will, to work my hurt and woe.
When He came – I did not know it, until He was very near.
As I bounded down amongst the rocks and empty tombs of stone.
Coming close to fall upon Him – as his friends shrank back with fear –
I instead fell at His feet. Helpless. Alone.
Then He spoke! My Legion left me – then they drowned a herd of swine!
I stood up, bespoke Him softly with my newly human tongue.
And the Holy Spirit filled me with His presence like sweet wine
David’s psalms I now remembered: these I sung.
Oh! I begged to Him accompany. But He turned down my pleas –
Although kindly. And He told me what to do, then left our shore.
As He sailed off, I watched the while, and worshipped on my knees.
Then arose and went to serve Him all the more.
Where I journeyed, there I testified – in each and every place.
The Decopolis my story heard: to all I said the same.
Some have said my love for Jesus shines full ardent in my face –
Thus I witness, to exalt His holy Name!