About once a week, the door gently opens into Malcolm Guite’s office. Viewers are invited in to take a seat while Guite searches his cluttered shelves for a treasured book to read out loud. But before he does, he’ll often light his pipe, pour a drink, cough a few times, and say a few words about the power of words to open doorways into worlds full of magic, courage, heartbreak, risk and adventure.
Guite is an English poet, songwriter, musician, scholar and Anglican priest. He is the author of five books of poetry and other books exploring faith, theology and the arts. He grew up in Nigeria, moved to Canada, and eventually settled in England. Since 2014, he has been a visiting research fellow at St. John’s College at Durham University.
Guite posted his first YouTube video on March 23, 2020, as the world was beginning to shut down because of the COVID-19 virus. In his very first video, he takes his viewers on a 1- minute, 42-second tour of his library, with one person responding in the comments, “Thank you Malcolm for letting us into your life in this way. Very much looking forward to this.” Since then, his viewership has grown to almost 20,000.
It’s obvious that Malcom Guite’s YouTube channel is not professionally produced – but it doesn’t matter. His wonderful English accent and that twinkle in his eye makes you feel like Narnia might be hiding right behind his bookcase. Like children to Narnia, we’re drawn in as Guite puffs smoke rings from his Gandalf-shaped pipe while he reads poetry to people all over the world, folks who have been lucky enough to find his channel. (YouTube)
About the Author
Sam Gutierrez is the Associate Director at the Eugene Peterson Center for the Christian Imagination at Western Theological Seminary. More of his creative work can be found at printandpoem.com