Book of Hours/ 6:00 p.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/ 6:00p.m.

If you have built castles in the air,
your work need not be lost;
that is where they should be.  Now put
the foundations under them.

 ~~~Henry David Thoreau

6:00p.m. Hour

I clicked my heels…
I was not attempting to escape this hour.
I clicked softly, bringing me back home from Oz.
At one time, I imagined the Yellow Brick Road.
I have had friends:  Scarecrows, Tin men, and even
Cowardly Lions.  Perhaps, a part of me resided in each
of those characters. (Oh, and yes, Toto, too) Have I encountered
a Fairy Princess…a good witch?  Have I actually taken the broom
of a bad witch and swept her floor in hopes that she
would see the entire world is not against her?
Did I believe behind some giant screen there was this
Magical, All-Powerful ‘Oz’ who could make my
every wish come true?  I am clicking heels
this time so I do not fall asleep in a poppy field
with flying monkeys overhead.  Really, what is
this prayer?  As these hours draw nearer to the completion
of a twenty-four-hour period, through seasons, through
years…stories play through my mind.  You are certainly
not the great and powerful Oz my heart has sought.
You are more Auntie Em…You are Uncle Henry…
Spirit…You are Professor Marvel, an Itinerant Fortune Teller
who recognizes a child has run away and you guide her
to return ‘Home.’  As simple as it sounds, returning
home is the journey of our lifetime.  These hours
lead me to you…a golden wheat field, a foundation
laid, set.  When it is time, it will start anew.

 

Pray with me in this hour.
7:00 p.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay…invite another!
No worries if you pass.  I hold you in the hours remaining.

 

 

Perch

Perch

Find your perch
and rest awhile…

Book of Hours/ 5:00 p.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/ 5:00p.m.

 Be yourself, everyone else
is already taken.

 ~~~Oscar Wilde

5:00p.m. Hour

 They say the eyes are the windows to the Soul.
These windows—a set of eyes…they gaze
from inside out…they gaze from the outside in.
What have they witnessed?  Has my vison changed
as time reveals itself over and over,
this hour, from these windows?   I ride as if
on a Ferris Wheel. I see for miles and miles.
Only for seconds, the picture changes—the
scenery, its landscape, positions…a rhythmic
cycle always forming new faces and holding a
familiar place.  How can ordinary windows reveal
so much, and how can so much unfold, becoming
something new again and again?
How can the ‘viewer’
not be changed in this hour, this specific time of
day?   No matter from which side of the window I stand,
the fading of light reveals images…
a casting of myself.  I look, I smile, I make a
funny face.  The window laughs, or was it the wind
pushing itself to get in?  My face reveals soft lines,
gentle wrinkles, adding to the personality of my character
growing with age.  I would love for others to see in me eyes
that express kindness, lips that speak truth, ears
listening to voices calling out, a nose that takes in
life’s delicate scents and breathes in its pleasures.
I would love others to see my open arms embracing
everything that has come my way…even the moments of
trial that broke my heart wider to love more
completely…even if the love denied.
So much more lies through these windows.
My eyes glimpse heaven in each of you…
my gaze has been blessed to behold.
I cannot begin
to count the endless faces of you, God,
that you have allowed, invited me to see.
And through this window,
You have allowed me to see You in me.

Pray with me in this hour.
6:00 p.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay…invite another!
No worries if you pass.  I hold you in the hours remaining.

 

  

Drops of Color/ Conversation with a Flower

Drops of Color
Conversation with a F
lower

Who asks you,
‘What is your race, your gender,
your creed?’

Pardon me, I could not hear
you.

‘Does anyone question the essence
of your being?’

Forgive me, I really cannot
understand what you’re
saying.

Help me…

Suddenly, the flower
unfolded itself before me.

Its beauty, its sweet savory perfume
expanding between us.

No words necessary.

Really, so simple,
if only we ‘saw’ the
loveliness in one another—

Each of us…A Divine Unfolding!

Book of Hours/ 4:00 p.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/ 4:00p.m.

 Once we believe in ourselves, we can
risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous
delight, or any experience that reveals
the human spirit.

 ~~~E.E. Cummings

4:00p.m. Hour

 The harvest ready…
Autumn changes the colors of this hour—
My breath softer, more silent, and I know
You, YAH-WEH, as I inhale and exhale.
My heart now beats to your unspoken name.
My steps move in the cadence of the air being
taken in and letting-go.  This hour, dusk begins
settling in.  The air changes—a cool breeze
rustles the leaves…some hang-on, others let-go—
hoisted, drifting, soaring and finding a place
to rest.  These hours tucked between seasons.
What is my prayer?  All these minutes that have
ticked on by…were they prayer?  Yes, these
ripened hands of time, they move without some-one
pulling or pushing life to become.  Life unfolds
without ‘me’ and, yet, it asks of me to be a
participant in this dance.  Life takes me, has
taken me by the hand. I have waltzed, Sashayed,
Rock-n-rolled, I have moon-walked and square-danced.
Then, beneath a blanket of stars, I closed my eyes
circling around the moon…a celestial wonder.
I was lifted, so ripe was I, I fell. I fell into
a pile of Autumn’s color-filled leaves only to
rake them higher so I could dive back in and fall.
Full circle, coming full circle, but give me these
remaining hours.  Let these lasting seconds
bring me nearer to you, who is
already at my side.

Pray with me in this hour—
5:00 p.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay…invite another!
No  worries if you pass.  I hold you in all the hours remaining.

 

 

 

‘blow’

‘blow’
I dare you NOT
to ‘blow’ these
beautiful seeds
into the 
Universe

Book of Hours/ 3:00 p.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/ 3:00p.m.

 “I’ve known rivers:  I’ve known rivers
ancient as the world and older than the
flow of human blood in human veins
my soul has grown deep like the rivers.

 ~~~Langston Hughes

3:00p.m. Hour

This hour basks in Summer’s warmth.  The clouds
overhead bathe in this season…like children, they
frolic across the sky.  I walk in the tall grasses
stopping to rest beneath a tree. Its shadow covers
me completely.  I see the light, and it is making
its way toward the western sky.  I pause…
colors evaporating, fading…the tapestry of this
field knitted so delicately…everything is full
and moving in a direction that suddenly
brings day to night.  The in-between hours at times
seem forgotten…they exist, almost expected.
Perhaps, this is my own expectation—that you are always
here and you are.  How have I changed like these
hours, these seasons?  My steps take place with
greater care. I look out and hold the moment,
know it no longer, nor ever did.  Nothing lasts forever.
But now…I treasure this summer.  I tuck it into
a chest digging a hole and place its ‘riches’—
‘a box of no possessions’—into the ground.
I dig so deep, I hit a spring.  It lifts the
chest from my hands and rushes away deep into
a pool of darkness.  Gone, but all the treasures
the seasons have blessed me with, I give back.
I give back holding the moments in my memory
realizing no-thing belongs to me, and still
I am in all things.
I hear the rush of the river
as this hour flows into the next
tributary.

Pray with me in this hour…
4:00 p.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay…invite another!
No worries if you pass.  I hold you in the hours remaining.

 

 

Drops of Color/ Definition of a Woman

Ketanji Brown Jackson
The 116th Associate Justice of the Untied States Supreme Court
Definition of a Woman

Let us begin with a fresh slate.
Our ‘ribs’ are uniquely our own.
Our physical attributes simply
do not define our brand
of how we are ‘made-up.’

I am fashioned and created 
from a Source who designs

all life in goodness, harmony, and
loving-kindness.

Women have a place
beyond the roles ‘She’ has been ascribed.
The masculine nature, its divine essence,
does not have a right to 
lay claim or set boundaries on the feminine nature.

A woman grows and becomes herself
like a tree planted beside restful waters.

Yet, even restful waters are stirred
when storms arrive.

The tree learns to thrive in difficult
moments and this, too, defines a woman.

A woman is strong and resilient
—if she chooses jeans, T-shirt and
high-top sneakers…so be it.

If later she places pearls around her neck,
drapes herself in a dashing dress which accompany
four inch heels…so be it.

A woman’s love is fierce
—if she has children, help the soul who
attempts to remove them from her nest

—if the woman does not have children,
trust, her feminine nature will pass

through any storm to reach out to a 
child in need, in want, in wonder.

A woman’s inclination invests in birth.
She is a life-giver,
and she has the God-given capacity
to choose what is right for her own body.

A woman carries both
feminine and masculine qualities
within herself
—just like her many loving brethren.

A woman loves to be comforted and
she loves to comfort.

When a man holds a door for her
—the gesture received in gladness.

It is not that she cannot open 
her own entryway
—it is the warmth of the expression.
A woman knows and understands
—she appreciates.

She, too, washes the stains of tears
that fall from men broken by pain
—men who fall into her arms
for solace at loss, illness,
senseless sufferings.

A woman is so many wondrous
expressions
—she is not a label expected to follow
guidelines on being
—she is a creative expression
of a smattering of colors
expressing themselves on a matte
—a work of art eliciting
a manifestation of endless meanings.

A woman cannot be defined.
Words cannot explain
the holy wanderer she is.
She walks awakening this world
with her ‘Yes’ to life.

She lives.  She moves.
Her being cannot be contained
—her lips worth kissing,

and her actions leave the Universe
BREATHLESS.

Define woman…she is the half
of a whole.

She who IS
cannot be anything else
but who she has been designed to be.
Cage her—she will still sing.
Bury her— she will rise.
Love her—she will give birth
again and again.

A woman is Creation
—pregnant with life
in its fullness.

Book of Hours/ 2:00 p.m.

 BOOK OF HOURS/ 2:00p.m.

 Two roads diverged in a wood,
and I—I took the one less
traveled by, and that has made
all the difference.

 ~~~ Robert Frost

2:00p.m. Hour

This hour, Spring Beginning.
Only a week ago…the 1:00p.m. hour, I was knee deep in snow.
How then, at this 2:00p.m. hour, have the trees begun to
bud?  In my deepest yearning to stay awake in these hours,
have I, like Rip Van Winkle, slept only to awaken to
a sudden newness?  Has the clock ticked so feverously
that I lost seconds, traveled in time, through time
bringing me back to familiar places seeing
things new?  The bark of the tree stronger, fuller…
its shadow, when the sun shines, covers more of the earth’s
floor.  I walked this same path again and again
until I was pulled in another direction. I
did not say to myself, “Wait, I don’t know this way!”
Instead, I moved freely, I stepped lightly…I saw
the blossoms overhead.  Was this a new path for them, too?
I think so.  Leaves crunched beneath my feet.  I
heard the rush of the river.  The hawk soared
overhead.  It mattered not where I was.  It mattered—
I was.  I blessed the ground…Mother Earth,
blessing me.   So filled with gratitude…all these hours.
Have I said thank you even once?  How do I offer
a bouquet of flowers to a Universe immersing
me in a garden so lush, plentiful, and dazzling?
There is not a place you say I cannot go.
Instead, you invite me down paths unexplored,
and I am beholden to wander.
Please, allow the hours to never end.
I thank you.

Pray with me this hour…
3:00 p.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay… invite another!
No worries if you pass.  I hold you in all the hours remaining.

 

 

Rooftop

Rooftop
Up on a rooftop
—witnessed by few.

Even if no one bore
contact with such splendor

—beauty cannot help
‘flutter’ in harmony
with creation.

Book of Hours/ 1:00 p.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/ 1:00p.m.

 For there is
always light,
if only we’re
brave enough
to see it
if only we’re
brave enough
to be it.

 ~~~ Amanda Gorman

1:00p.m. Hour

This hour transported me to a snow-covered hill.
How the hours, like the seasons, pressing forward,
change the face of the landscape…transforming
the Sojourner, chilled to the bone.  Yet, a warmth
within allows me to reside in this space.
The clouds overhead give way for patches of blue
sky…the sunlight meets the crisp air
and, for a time, I am frozen in this hour.
The skeletal trees show off their display
of branches.  Do they miss being ‘robed’ in vibrant
green leaves?  What is it I miss, if anything, this hour?
Each snowflake, its own design…no two alike!  A simple
realization, but is it really? 
Everything that exists, uniquely and wonderfully made.
It is beginning to snow.
I hold my hand out, a knitted mitten covers my fingers.
A glorious design lands in my palm.  Oh, that I could
stay in this place collecting such wonder.  Just what is
my prayer in this wintery season?  I think it beneath the
snow where so much unknown is taking place.  Perhaps,
it is happening in me, too, this hour.  The simple joy in
waiting and the humility to embrace this naked now.
How life shines.

Pray with me in this hour…
2:00 p.m. will arrive next Monday—

Promise you will stay…invite another!
No worries if you pass.  I hold you in all the hours remaining.

 

 

 

Implement

Implement
We are intrinsically
and wonderfully made.

We are gifted with
‘means’ to protect
ourselves.

It is learning how to
implement those built in 
guards so that we
‘also’ do not inflict
pain on others.

Book of Hours/ Noon

BOOK OF HOURS/ Noon

 “My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going.
I do not see the road ahead of me.
I cannot know for certain where it will end.
Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am
following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so.
But, I do believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you.
And I hope I have that desire in all that I do.
I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire.
And I know that if I do this you will lead me by
the right road though I may know nothing about it.
Therefore, will I trust you always though
I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death.
I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and
you will never leave me to face my perils alone.”

 ~~~Thomas Merton—Thoughts in Solitude

Noon Hour

 Twelve grains of sand have swiftly filled the hour
glass.  Halfway through this day, this hour…Noon.
My feet stand on the shore.  The tide is out.
I walk for what seems hours, but mere seconds have
ticked away.  I hear the formation of a wave
forming.  It is followed by another.  The water
begins to fill in my every step removing the
act that I am here.  You invite my Soul to stay.
You carry all those hid-den steps into the sea…
A million grains of sand between the smooth
surface of the ocean’s covers.  Maybe the twelve
grains filling the hourglass are a culmination
of endless hours seeking You.  The surf rises,
a wave, out of nowhere, splashes me.
It is You, it is Spirit soaking me, reminding me that it
is You seeking me.  Again, I want to ask “Why,” but
You have opened the eyes of my heart at the zenith
of the sun’s glorious bliss.  You always pursue me…
the endless Lover seeking Union with your Beloved.
I swim to shore and playfully build a castle—
A dwelling place to rest in You a while.
I do not see at all where this is heading.
Does it matter?  I think not.
I hear the movement of the next grain of sand
slipping through its miniscule space.
The hourglass, giving this moment to the sea’s
majestic breath, to its ebb and flow.
My prayer, alive on this shore,
You—the ocean’s spray.

Pray with me in this hour…
1:00 p.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay…invite another!
No worries if you pass.  I hold you in the hours remaining.

 

 

Drops of Color/ For No Reason

Drops of Color
For No Reason

A stuffed animal
left behind
‘in a child’s dirty boot.’

A maternity ward
‘has collapsed.’
I look out the window
…I want to hear the cries
of life just beginning.

Instead, I hear the sound of rubble
—person sifting through stones.

From a safe harbor
on the other side of the sea,
I keep watch
—safely
‘in my bed’
—the sandy shore.

The arms of a woman
clutching a blanket
—her child no more

—her husband turns running
the other way
letting-go of her hand.

Tears, like a dam bursting,
—soak his boots
as he makes his way

into a war

holding a gun
he knows not how to use.

Does he really have
to learn THIS way?

‘What is the war of this war?’

He was just warming
the milk in his child’s bottle
—it’s empty.

Are these words of mine bullets?
or are they wounds?
Imaginary shrapnel rips
open my chest wall!

I feel the pain searing my heart
pumping with the freedom to breathe,

and somewhere
NOT so far away

bombs litter the sky—

‘for no reason.’

 

Written under the wise tutelage of June  S. Gould, Ph.D.

Book of Hours/ 11:00 a.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/ 11:00a.m.

 “You are the sky
everything
else—it’s just the
weather.”

 ~~~ PEMA CHODRON

11:00a.m. Hour

 A prism of colors highlights this hour.
A culmination of effervescent hues…each one
uniquely its own color and, yet it blends itself into
fullness.  Reaching from one end of the sky to
the other, there is NO fixed point.  An endless
point absorbs the quantum field, this space.
This created wonder gifts us this hour
marking and moving towards the halfway point
of this cumulative prayer.
If there be a pot of gold at the end of this rainbow, if I have NOT
witnessed the pot of gold ever present in
each hour, then, I should remain on
my knees until I SEE.
Truly, in this hour, I am sliding along the arc of this light. I splash into a pool of
wonder coming up to slide down the other
side—the other side which truly is
 the same side.
I blend into the colors of this world.
A beam from each color ignites my center.
Here you are.  In my mind’s eye,
Spirit, you cast a rainbow,
A Promise.
I linger here for now.

Pray with me in this hour.
Noon time will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay…invite another!
No worries if you pass.  I hold you in all the hours remaining.

 

 

Bars

Bars
The bars
do not hold
anything back.

The bars allow the
bush to spread
and open its buds
beyond anything that
could contain
its beauty.

Book of Hours/ 10:00 a.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/ 10:00a.m.

 This we know,
the earth does not belong to us,
we belong to the earth.
This we know,
All things are connected.

 ~~~Chief Seattle

10:00a.m. Hour

 The leaves are curling open,
soft green drapes drawn.
I hear the wind breathe ‘into’ them,
the branches cackle.
Awe.  To be touched again
by the new buds unfolding,
covering the nakedness by which the tree has been
adorned.  Wait!  Adorned in nakedness,
the exposed Soul of the tree, like this Soul,
stands beneath these towering pillars of
delicate bark.  How is one adorned when no
longer covered?  Perhaps, in this hour, standing
with nothing but an open self.
Perhaps, unbridled by cover, I hear, I hear
the chirping bird singing from the highest
peak of the tree.  I hear the symphony of insects,
each species singing its own pitch…and a harmony.
Yes, a harmony, balanced as if on a string, and another
string, and another…as if the Universe a harp, and
each delicate strand drawn and plucked
pulsating into this Cosmos a song of Union.
Earth, Gaia, she holds us…her being a womb
keeping watch over her garden.  In wonder,
she anoints and blesses the day, not only the
hour, but every second exhilarated by the Breath of Life.
Life transforming itself over and over—
Never the same, yet always lasting.
In this hour, I listen.  I hear the
heartbeat of a world pulsing within
everything…yes, even in me.

Pray with me in this hour.
11:00 a.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay—invite another!
No worries if you pass.  I hold you in all the hours remaining.

 

 

We’ll Ride

We’ll Ride

I may be small
—a tad
wobbly,
but give me time…

let me fall
and get back up

watch me run
—don’t stand in the path.

Rub a gentle brush
across my hide
—fill my trough with 
wild oats.

Wait…only a bit longer
—then get on.
Together we’ll ride.

Book of Hours/ 9:00 a.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/ 9:00a.m.

 The Root of the Root of Yourself

Don’t go away, come near.
Don’t be faithless, be faithful.
Find the antidote in the venom.
Come to the Root of the Root of
Your Self.

 Molded of clay, yet kneaded
from the substance of certainty,
a guard at the treasury of Holy Light—
Come, return to the Root of the Root of
Your Self.

Once you get hold of selflessness,
you’ll be dragged from your ego
and freed from many traps.

 ~~~RUMI

9:00 a.m. Hour

 Do not let go…I want to close my eyes for just a little while.
Promise you will not let go.  A memory lingers as I recall the moment you first
took my hand.  I did not know the meaning of ‘steps’ yet,
my wobbly legs, knees calloused from crawling, attempt to
rise.  I fall, but you come to my side.  Your hand, it reaches
down…you descend to meet me.  We ascend together.  I am
walking…you say nothing, you do not have to.  You are smiling,
that is more that words can reveal.
You have held on until I was ready to let-go.
You were smiling as I broke out into a run.
How all the years in these hours bring me back to those
drifting moments of your nearness.  You’re gone, yet
you have not let-go.  Sometimes your hand
caresses my face when I sleep.  I wake looking
left, right, below, above!  Was it, was I dreaming?
Let me sleep in this hour, for just a while.
I know you’ll come…you have never let-go.
And, I hold on to every lasting hour.

Pray with me in this hour.
10:00 a.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay…invite another!
No worry if you pass.  I hold you in all the hours remaining.

 

 

Roll-on

Roll-on

The wheel of time
understands when its journey
is ready to move to another level.
The circle rests until it’s time to
roll-on.

Book of Hours/ 8:00 a.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/ 8:00a.m.

 “Keeping watch…
in the morning
when I began to wake
it happened again

 That feeling
that you, Beloved
had stood over me all night
keeping watch

 That feeling
that as soon as I began to stir

 You put your lips on  my
forehead
and lit a holy lamp
inside my heart.”

 ~~~Hafiz

8:00 a.m. Hour

  In between branches, your light exudes revealing open spaces.
Open spaces in no need to be filled—instead, they become
endless windows allowing you to shine through.  I sit beneath this
tree—before me, a sea which looks like a sheet of glass.
You slide majestically over the stillness.  A fish breaks the surface…it, too,
mindful of this hour, this beginning, this fierce spectrum
of fire that would consume us if we were any nearer to its
vibrancy.  From this distance, your radiant splendor
kisses not only my forehead, it bathes my soul in
a warmth that ignites a soft whisper.  The whisper is my
pursed lips blowing you a kiss…as if you needed my kiss!
Wait, you do…your longing, deeper than mine.  You wait and
wait for me.  You rise and I believe I hear you say,
“Kiss me again.”
And, I do, I do, I do.

Pray with me in this hour
9:00 a.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay…invite another!
No worry if you pass.  I hold you in all the hours remaining.

 

 

 

Beating

Beating
Even if you

‘cut’ me down,
I will find the
will to keep
beating.

Book of Hours/ 7:00 a.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/ 7:00a.m.

 “When it is over, I want to say:  all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.  I
was the bridegroom, taking the world into
my arms.”

 ~~~Mary Oliver

 

7:00a.m. Hour

A sweet intoxication fills the air.  The prayer this hour
tasting the essence of familiarity.  Far from ripe, yet
having been ripe, a renewal cast within waiting
for the union of this moment, timeless expectation.
Soon the earth’s movement will sway enough to
allow the wedded bliss of light to cast itself
on every morsel of open space—AMAZING!  Though this hour,
this season, not open for blossoming, yet, ‘inside’ a pregnancy of
swirling juices surging, unseen.  In the veins, and within the
wood, life carries, it revolves, transforms into what will become.
This prayer, like this process, round and round!  Sometimes
I feel as if I am chasing you, then I almost have
my hand on the third daunting presence who now sneaks in
between us and chuckles.  Then, I glance, and neither
of you there—Gone!  Now, two chuckles heard from behind me.
You both in pursuit of me.  Rolling in the green grass,
I begin to laugh.  Try it…simply laugh.  Laugh out loud.
Do not worry if you are heard.  Preferably, you have found a
place of solitude.  Let the laughter out until tears pour down
your face.  Really, I pray you will
try it.  I just did, and I am in wedded bliss
awaiting what is soon to light the dawn.

Pray with me in this hour.
8:00 a.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay, invite another!
No worry if you pass.  I hold you in all the hours remaining.

 

 

I Love U

I Love U
Is there really
anything more to say?

Book of Hours/ 6:00 a.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/6:00a.m.

 “I’ve learned that people will forget what
you said, people will forget what you did,
but people will never forget how you
made them feel.”

 ~~~Maya Angelou

6:00a.m. Hour

 Oh, that we could stay right here.
Please…look at the sky, its colors…
Who spilled the paint cans in such divine wonders?
How did pink merge into orange, and soft yellows
gather beside violet and blue?
We are moving. I drag my feet in the soil wishing
this hour eternal.  Why?  Look, look, can you not
see the beauty?  The Artist’s easel—filled with endless pastels!
You are laughing at me, again.  No matter how many times
I’m awake at this moment, I’m like a new born
splashing from its mother’s womb.  It is a new day,
another dawning inviting us to believe in a world
untouched, expanding, growing, blossoming, dying—yes,
ending to fall back into the earth and rise again…Resurrection.
My prayer is a color wheel spinning round and round…
Dabs of green, deep browns…and
I kick off my shoes, my feet run across jagged rocks…I am not harmed.
I slide down a waterfall—I am soaked, praying I
never dry.  I breathe, I go under.  Wait, I am still
Breathing!  I am not holding my breath.  You take my hand,
my left hand, Spirit holds on to my right hand.  You both become wings.  My body,
a temple–the center
and
we fly…this hour, we fly to greet what
will impregnate this dawn.

 

Pray with me in this hour.
7:00 a.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay, invite another! 
No worry if you pass!  I hold you in all the hours remaining.

 

 

Wally

Wally

Frigid temperatures.

He sat outside on
stacked crates.

The establishment had no
issue allowing him in
to use its facilities.

He was known to several
regular customers
—kind words, smiles exchanged.

One day, when he was inside,
he discovered ‘something.’

He did NOT announce,
“Look, look at me,
look what I’m doing.”
No, he quietly turned over
his findings to the barista.

A man came running in, shaking—
His wallet returned.

This gentle ‘giant’ of a man
homeless~~~honest…

“He ain’t heavy, he’s my brother,” Wally.

Book of Hours/ 5:00 a.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/ 5:00a.m.

 “Hope is the thing with feathers that
perches in the Soul—and sings the tunes
without the words—and never stops at all.”

 ~~~Emily Dickinson

 

5:00a.m. Hour

 I am lying here…I fit so comfortably in your
curl…I know some things are changing and dramatically.
Your light fading, yet a light not so distant is filling the
sky.  I spread my wings splashing into the black ocean
that has held us in these hours.  Like a coin tossed in
the air, heads win now, tails win, too.  I reflect back,
but the tail, yes, the tail that is you, curls around
bringing me face to face…clock ticking, my pupils
restricting.  I rub my eyes…the stars present, yet
soften…this hour like a caterpillar breaking from its
cocoon and a metamorphosis ensues.  Born again, a set of
wings.  Have I been crawling all these hours, well,
these few hours, so vast, that I did not see how you wove
around me allowing me, too, to be born again?  I ask
again, who am I, and who are you in this hour?  Will you tell me
some-thing in what ‘becomes’ in a ‘blink’ of an eye?
Oh, endearing presence, I love how you are there in
between the ‘blink.’ There is no-thing separating
the hours.  Though the image created new, you are in
all inviting me to see, who I, too, am in all.
How can I keep from singing!

Pray with me in this hour.
6:00 a.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay…invite another!
No worry if you pass! I hold you in all the hours remaining.

 

 

 

 

A Wheel Barrow

A Wheel Barrow

The wind hollows—
the snow drifts piled high.

I set out—a wheel barrow in tow,
colored flowers
filled its trough. 

For a moment,
I could smell the fragrant
flowers…

as snowflakes
tickled my nose.

Book of Hours/ 4:00 a.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/4:00a.m.

 “RE-examine all that you have been told…
Dismiss that which insults your soul.”

 ~~~Walt Whitman

4:00a.m. Hour

 You begin to diminish…Wait!  Why?
Why does the hour pass so quickly?  I turned a moment…
my finger, wishing it to be like a fishing pole I could cast, that I might catch you,
and lure you into my hand.
I wanted to hold you, cupping your ‘light,’ praying you would
never disappear.  A snag is on my line—I tug, tug again.
The line breaks…is this all an illusion?  I have heard
so many interpretations of The Beginning…so many tales,
but what if it is all a fairy-tale?  What if there be no
pages to turn directing us to a story explaining
existence?  Why is it we need an explanation?  Who is it
we assume knows the truth?  There it is, that word—Truth!
If we stand before a vast sea, you look out, I look out,
and the unassuming ‘presence’ lingering beside us looks.
All at once, we speak aloud what it is we see.  We each
hold a vison of the truth before us.  Each of us
standing on the shore, gets into a boat, set sail!
We lower the mast…the waves carry us.  We do not
choose the direction.  We sit in this hour hearing one
another’s truth.  The waves settle, we rock and rock.
We no longer see the shore.  Does that mean it no
longer exists?  You fade…I know you are there.
How ‘this’ all came to be?  Yes, countless explanations.
The only stirring—swimming in the sea of my thoughts.
Can we make this lasting for our children, their
children and all created ‘things’ longing for
Life to-day?

Pray with me in this hour.
5:00 a.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay…invite another!
No worry if you pass! I hold you in all the hours remaining.

 

 

 

Looming

Looming

Quiet, serene…timeless.
Below, the darkness—
looming.

On top, soft flakes,
white like flour
ready for baking.

In between,
what is not visible,
is the blossoming
already
begun.

 

 

Book of Hours/ 3:00a.m.

BOOK OF HOURS/ 3:00a.m.

 “You are not a human being in search of a
spiritual experience.  You are a spiritual
being immersed in a human experience.”

 ~~~Teilhard de Chardin

3:00a.m. Hour

 Although you are whole…in this hour,
half of you revealed.  My lens captured you.  I cannot begin to
count the images photographed.  Even if someone were to step-in
stealing what fills the page, I know you are there.
Perhaps, my prayer is a million photos without words.
Click, Click, Click, I hear the night…this night.  I’m often
asked, “What is it you do out in this hour, and why?”  How can
I give a rational reply to a call that nudges so
intimately I cannot help but reach and touch the echoed
refrain.  In this time, I hear the soft cry of the morning’s
first bird lifting its feathers unleashing its song.  I hear
the engine of a car starting…soon the world will awake
to busy-ness as usual.  I hear my steps.

I stop long enough to hold the silence.  Half-hearted,
I turn my whole-heart in each direction.  Clouds
cover you for a time being.  I know you’re there.
You are never gone.  I immerse myself until
the clouds cover me…still, I’m here with you,
and the ‘other’ touching the shutter button, zooming in
and out…more ‘shots’ fired.  I’m still standing,
and only the simplicity of sweet “nothing-ness” heard.

Pray with me in this hour…
4:00a.m. will arrive next Monday—

Promise you will stay…invite another!  No worry if
you pass.  I hold you in all the hours remaining.

 

 

Dwelling

Dwelling

A dwelling,
a place to nest,
free from the elements,
yet open to take
them in.

A sacred place you
invite others to
enter…

A place called home.
Here, is where the
heart lies.

Book of Hours/ 2:00 a.m.

Book of Hours/ 2:00 a.m.

 “ I come into the peace of wild things who
do not tax their lives with forethought of
grief…for a time I rest in the grace
of the world, and am free.”

 ~~~Wendell Berry



2:00a.m. Hour

 Nodding off…
Only seconds…
The black veil pushes itself upon you and you seem only
to Light the sky with unlimiting wonder.  I attempt to erase
the shadow, attempt to assist the light…silly human, I
am!  Who am I to think I might help you shine?  Then,
I hear, or believe I heard you laughing aloud.  You said,
“You are who I am…you shine, yes, you ignite the world
with your unique ability to illuminate what lies in you.

It is I who dwell in the inner cavern of your being.”
The stalactites, hanging from your unseen cave,
 grow from the top down and from the bottom up.  Your
creative self growing…you no longer wait for the
right time to birth what is fashioned from you.
It matters not who receives your work, how it branches out
into the world, or even it be lasting.  If what is born
in you holds only this hour, it has been
 gifted this hour to be. 
Humbled again by a stirring minute,
all the seconds that have existed in this final hour never
to be as it is now.  Who are you?  Who am I?
Living the moment, you soon clearly see.

Pray with me in this hour…
3:00 a.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay…invite another!  No worry if
you pass.  I hold you in all the hours remaining.

 

 

 

Powdery Dream

Powdery Dream
Please don’t wake me 
from this
‘powdery’ dream.

Book of Hours/ 1:00 a.m.

Book of Hours/ 1:00a.m.

A finger pointing at the moon is not,
the moon.  The finger is needed to know where to
look for the moon, but if you mistake the
finger for the moon itself, you will never know
the real moon.  The teaching is like a raft that
carries you to the other shore.

 ~~~Thich Nhat Hanh

1:00a.m. Hour

 An hour passed…what is my prayer?  Drizzle upon drizzle of
star dust paints the lashes keeping watch over my eyes…
WIDE OPEN.  I stare wondrously, and observe how
You have folded back light’s cover only a smidgen.
I see a glimmer in your shadow.  How can a shadow
glimmer?  I ask questions uncertain of a need for
an answer.  Bathed in mystery, I remain fixed to
this hour.  Again, the presence, without revealing
itself enters the space.  Where?  How?  No words
can adequately express this stirring I feel.

Like the soft sheet folded back, it is my soul
uncovering.  Hid-den yet exposed—searching, holding.
With my fingers grasping for the very edge, I
will not, cannot let-go of this moment.  So real,
and yet, it vanishes…lost, but alas found.
My fingers uncurl, hands no longer folded.  A new
prayer posture…each finger lifted, reaching,
extending…the ‘deep’ reaching back…no space between us. 
Amen.

Pray with me in this hour…
2:00am will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay…invite another!  No worry if
you pass.  I hold you in all the hours remaining.

Winter

Winter
Winter, too, is an
Author writing
on a blank
sheet of
powdered white
snowflakes.

Book of Hours/ Mid-Night

Book Of Hours

Introduction

Time—a gift given to each of us at the moment
of birth to walk along the path our creator
has invited us to and to use each moment
to honor our humanity and to stay faithful
to the journey.

The Book of Hours is one woman’s journey
over the course of a lifetime sketched out
in a twenty-four-hour period as she embraces life
and celebrates the God within her.
The meditations are not brick and mortar reflections of life,
but rather as gentle raindrops falling to earth.

Through glorious pictures and deeply
penetrating stories, the path embraced is
splashed in splendor and exudes a sense of
peace, hope, and love.

You, the reader, are invited to walk the
journey.  Standing quietly at the outset, you
are being nudged gently to accept the invitation. 
Gaze upon a solitary path
and, as the hushed moments unfold into
hours, take the time to envision a juncture
where the solitary path diverges—where
you are invited to pursue your personal
journey—sometimes lonely, but an honest
journey through your life’s experiences.  Each
will silently and gently allow you to see
yourself in the MIRROR as life unfolds before
you and challenges you to look deeply within
and listen to the beat of your heart.

Time~~~ a gift given.
What now?

Listen…the Hours speak.

Be not afraid—
trust…follow me.

The Book of Hours is written for you—for me.
Let each penned word touch your heart.
Immerse yourself in the story’s message.
Follow Your Heart.

                                                     ~~~Alberta Surowiec

BOOK OF HOURS/ Mid-Night

 

“I live my life in widening circles
that reach out across the world.
  I may not complete this last one
                               but I give myself to it.
                                

   I circle around God, around the primordial tower.
  I’ve been circling for thousands of years
 and still I do not know: am I a falcon
             a storm, or a great song?”

~~~Rainer Maria Rilke

 

Mid-Night Hour

The mid-night hour holds the moon’s fullness.
The only shadows, the deep sea of night’s
darkness, pulling themselves back.  The light revolves
around a world given permission to slumber.
Resting, yet awake, my pupils, black as licorice.  They swirl
around meeting the circular lemon drop outside my windowpane.

We gaze, long, effortlessly, hoping to discover what?  What unknown
visitor wishes to share in this moment?  A third presence
fills what only now I recognize as some distinct void.

Hovering, it holds the light, and the dilation of my pupils
grows wider and wider reaching for the glowing ember
beholden to the night.  I hear my breath, but is it my breath
that speaks?  I hear the sound of a name that need not
be spoken.  It can be heard on the inhale… ‘YAH,’ and as I
exhale, ‘WEH’ again, ‘YAH’-‘WEH.’  A wind seems to
push the moon, and that same breeze unsettles me to follow.
I rise, drape my blanket around my shoulders.  I shiver, not
because I am cold, but what it is calling. This visitor, how
many times we have met.  You continuously expand my curiosity.
I’m never at a loss to seek you and I pray I never truly
find you.  If I did, I believe I would have to begin as if
a first time.

Pray with me in this hour…
1:00a.m. will arrive next Monday—
Promise you will stay…invite another!  No worry if you pass.
I hold you in all the hours remaining.