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.

 

 

 

Drops of Color/ Scapegoat

Drops of Color

Scapegoat

Atop a lofty crag
—you skipped
—you trounced
—you grazed.

Out of nowhere, they came.

In their eyes, you saw
an irrational intent,
but, it was too late.

They held you, they bound
you, no matter which way
you moved attempting to 
flee, tighter and 
tighter became their restraint.

You let out a shallow
cry, and then another.

They ‘weighted’ you down
all the more thinking they
would pile all their burdens
upon you setting themselves
free.

You watched your kin from
a distance, the smoke of
the fire waffled in the 
air.

Sacrificed—and, now you
let go.

After being scourged,
they set you out in a wasteland—
your very being laid down.

They celebrated back in 
their villages—lifting their voices
in song.

They were feeling the
release of their sins, placing
on you all their
demons.

They missed the sound of 
your lasting breath,
“Forgive them, they know
not what they do.’

 

A New Year upon us…
Let us pick up our back packs and not saddle its contents upon another.
Let us carry who we are consciously giving thanks for our created self,
holding all the realties that make us who we are, yes our joys and our sorrows.
Let us OPEN our eyes seeing life anew and step forward into a collective Oneness with all creation.

 

 

 

Reeds

Reeds

I sat along the bank
of a river.

The reeds gathered themselves
around me until my 
body submerged itself in
an unexpected baptism.

Enraptured was I,
becoming each drop of water.

I stretched my body, a 
chalice, in each direction.

Pouring myself like droplets
of rain,

I fell pelting the pristine
landscape.

I rose from the water.
Now, sitting on the bank,
I began again as reeds
wrapped themselves around me.

Drops of Color/ Let it be done…

Drops of Color

Let it be done…

You cannot
see
but,  there is a 
small child
behind this instrument.

The ensemble kept calling to her.
She was told, “NO,
you’re a girl.”

She took out
‘all’ the pots & pans.
Grabbed hold of spatulas
and wooden spoons.

Oh, she played the drums.
Yes, she did,
 even more so because
she was a girl.

Two sticks in her hands
were like branches on a tree.

The first ‘tap’— a leaf blossomed.
The second ‘tap’— the tree magically
draped itself in a green coat of notes.
The third and forth ‘tap’— burst
through the forest.

The beating of the sticks
loosened the ground
calling the animals to come out of
their dens.

They, creation’s creatures, thumped
the ground joining the beat.

The sun flickered
and clouds beat
together creating a 
rain shower soaking
the dance floor.

The child
came out from
behind the set.

She looked out
at all that was
before her—
The stage enveloped her.

She heard creation
‘groaning,’
laboring for another song,

and because 
she was a girl,

She said,
“Let it be done
through me!”

Night Divine

Night Divine
(Excerpt from a Journal/ Camino St Francis September 2019/ La Verna, Italy)

Night Divine

Sometimes
the moon is like a 
white page…words
splashed in ink
become the black sky.

The more numerous the words become…
SOMETIMES
they fill the page, they
merge together so
nothing can be read
or understood
except the light
of the silent moon
crossing the sky.

Oh, Divine Night
held in infinite splendor.
Who is it that splashed your canopy with a
bouquet of dazzling stars?

One after another popped like kernels of corn~~~
a few shot through and across your pallet
re-creating a pattern ever changing, 
groaning, aching with delight, as if being 
born anew.  The Milky Way split itself
upon the scene…Oh Holy Night.

I wish you never end. I  laid me down
in the curl of the moon’s crest…sleep overcame
me and my lashes, upon waking, covered in
starry dew.  Again, I wish this night
never cease from being.  The majestic trees,
from my window pane, stand like a line of
shadows, stately shepherds, keeping watch on
this night.  One tiny bird rises to sing.
Its voice stretches into a vastness beyond
reach, yet, I hold out my hand like a cup
and you fill  my palm with a breath of
wonder that I hold and then set free.
NO-thing is mine.  EVERY-thing made,
including this me, asks, Who am I? Who 
are You?  

Oh, that I AM One of your stars,
THIS night, that as you look, you might speak to
yourself, “Ah, Yes, I SEE thyself in thee.”

Oh, Night Divine.

Drops of Color/ Star of Wonder…

Season’s Greetings
“We” Celebrate in ‘many’ ways
AND
“We” are infinitely One.
Blessings of Holy Wonder

 

Drops of Color

Star of Wonder…

Beyond frozen, ice formations
decorate a chilled window.

Oh, holy night.

Neatly splattered across glass,
a million faces
—each snowflake an image
of a creator.

Those gazing into
the faces,
a reflection of themselves
made visible.

Yes, in each speckle,
in every frosty bite,
artistic mortality
revealed without a pen,
or paint, or brush, no strands
of yarn or colored beads.

Stars unite with cold
linking to the warmth of the Soul
touching the glass from the inside
and reuniting with itself.

‘Star of Wonder
Star of Light
Star with royal
beauty bright.’

Overhead, you shine.
Overhead, you press the image of
yourself on this window.
Looking out from this pane,
Oh, star of wonder,
You have found
the One you reside within.

‘Guide us to this perfect light.’

 

 

Behold

Behold

The slender oar
stroked the blue sparkling water
—a matte rippling
—a gentle wake leaving a trail
     then disappearing.

High above,
beyond site,
a rumble.

Like a chisel striking marble
—an avalanche.

Giant sheets of rock
pounding the terrain
—a matte torn
—hard impressions
     re-creating the mountain’s face.

The oar lifts from the water.
The unseen sculptor
seems to lift the chisel.

There is a quiet
that opens the silence
—an invitation…
     no formal words written.

The oar skims the glass lake
revealing the mountain’s reflection.

From nowhere, a rock
sails as if launched from
a sling.

The waters stirred.

The oar dips
—the matte
     creating itself
—new expressions
     dawning.

A soft still voice
somewhere in the distance.
The echo of the One sending
the invitation…

“Behold.”

 

Drops of Color/ Another…

Drops of Color
Another…

I struggle to place the
word on paper.

Another __________

I do NOT wish to speak it aloud!

Something ‘within’ breaks
like a dam unclogged from a river
—it flows.

Another SHOOTING
Another Shoot-ing
another shooting

For too long, in my seemingly short life,
I have listened.  Sometimes, I haphazardly tuned out
individuals who spoke out about laws that focused 
on weaponry.

NOW, I hear the arguments, the jokes
unfurled…please, this is NO
laughing matter.

I hoped, prayed when the VOICES
of children rose like a phoenix rising from the ashes
addressing their concerns~~~
 their cries would be heard.

The voices of children, the children,
OUR children

their future!

Instead, BIG business prevailed.

Is there an answer?
What is the correct question?

They are ‘in’ us—each of them…

MADISYN BALDWIN

TATE MYRE

HANA ST JULIANA

JUSTIN SHILLING

We must respond for them!

Is this sad for you to read?
It is breaking  open my heart
to pen these thoughts.

BUT— Love
                   Love
                        Love
brings us again and again to a cave…
no room in any inn
—a child born to ignite the World.

We are here to LIGHT the world…
Called to do even greater things.

Can we drop to our knees?

Are we able to create a lasting story
where another life is saved
because we ‘release’ all 
that would hold us victimized
and rise to leave a future
where our children our mindful?

Let us consciously 
choose love 
so that our children 
are able to live on.

Faith Road

Faith Road

A lifetime of roadways

marked clearly,
most discovered on maps.

All these ‘streets’
—traveled by many.

Some of these roads,
it seems, I have traversed
a million times.

Funny, really…
Even after forging a way
over and over,
I see new ‘things.’
Were they always there?
Maybe, Yes!  Perhaps, No!
Why NOW do I see
what has always been present?

Today, I often go off the grid
—a road less traveled.

In fact, pavement is not
beneath my feet.
Pure earth pressed between
the traction of my soles.

What name do I give this road?…

‘Faith,’ would be the name in this
present transition
manifesting the transformation
of my soul.

Often, a metamorphosis
takes place inside 
that I do not SEE.

How could I?
My eyes look out!
Yet, what I see in front
of me—
You, Countless others…
Human and not so human.

I gaze recognizing
we are ‘all’ in each other

—we are One.

We need to realize
that ‘we’ live within each other.
Your cells
a blending of mine
and, mine yours.

Maybe if we paused
—a little while
—heard our inhale…
     our exhale
—we would allow ourselves
    to be embraced by the
    very creation we dwell within
—groaning in labor
    to birth the love
    of our communion.

Perhaps, I’m learning—
ONLY now to live my Faith
—Walk in Faith.

Join me—
the road may be narrow
but, we can all fit.

Faith  tells me so!

 

 

 

Drops of Color/ Leap Frog

Drops of Color
Leap Frog

Remember the days of
hide-and-seek,
kick the can,
red light green light?

Do you recall
tag-you’re-it,
hop-scotch,
and running through the sprinklers?

Hour after hour of fun
from sun up to sun down…

No electronic devices found,
batteries were not included…or even needed.

The only ‘mouse’ discovered—
the one scurrying into the bushes because
of the sounds of little feet
seeking the perfect place to hide away.

We played leap frog…
Now, the memory at play
—one got so low to the ground,
the other ‘leaped’ over
and released a gigantic,
R-I-B-B-I-T,   R-I-B-B-I-T…

Places were traded, more boys and girls
rushed into the grassy pond.

Before we all realized,
the street lights turned on.
We hopped home.
We were asleep before our heads
touched the pillow.

Sweet dreams 
ensued
leaping over stars
until tomorrow

when we all
become ‘frogs’

once again

leaping into our imaginations.

 

***This poem is dedicated to ALL our children***

A Bridge I am…

A Bridge I am…

My ten fingers hold
starlight—
they are ropes dangling
from a celestial sky.

No matter how deep the 
darkness— the particles,
the hues of a million
galaxies allow the bridge,
I am, to sway.

And, no matter the storms
let loose,
my ten clay toes are the 
boards creating the 
walkway I am.

‘Here on this bridge, I am, between
star shine and clay.’

We are not two separate entities.
We are One significant masterpiece
allowing movement to flow.

Crossing this bridge,
I am at peace on both
sides.  The landscapes on
one end invite me into
a garden of endless wonder—
towering trees aloft with green
satiny leaves…
ah, I play in their branches.

On the other side, I plunge
into the ocean and I’m
draped in seaweed and an array
of sea life swims beside me.
I tumble with the tide
and I trust
the ebb and its flow.

‘Here on this bridge between
star shine and clay,’

I rest in its center.
I quiet myself
long enough
that the stars shine
from my clay toes
and, clay ropes
lead me into a Universe
I can only
discover in my dreams.

A bridge, I am,
and always
it leads me back home
to you
where stars and clay
first began.
Inspired by Lucille Clifton’s poem, “won’t you celebrate with me”

 

 

Drops of Color/ Lean In…

Drops of Color

Lean In…

The table set
— a lasting Supper…

that IS what Thanksgiving has come
to be—for me.

Is this a poem?  Lean In…

I often pause, held in the image of the 
Beloved Disciple, Apostle of Apostles,
leaning in to the One about to break bread,
share from the same cup, a sip of wine,
and then pausing, pausing long enough
to ‘still’ the table and each gatherer.

Room made to wash the feet
of every person in the space…leaning in.

I lean in…in Thanksgiving
to each of you reading these words,
who sometimes scroll down to see
the photo first, or take in the art work.

I lean in…like the one in Michelangelo’s Last Supper
listening to the lasting heart beat.

She held his silent actions,
breathed in his every word.

Wait?  Do you think I made a typo
by referencing the One beside
Jesus as she?
She, it is, I exclaim, leaned in.

Why?  Because it is what I hold
and lean ‘in’to.

An institution painted her to be
an adulterous woman yet, it was she who
remained at the foot of the cross,
it was she who announced,
“He” is Risen—it is she who leaned In
trusting as I do these words.

Today, as you sit at table,
I’m leaning in, held in gratitude
and Thanksgiving.

Each of us serves what we have been
called to create.

Take and offer your abundance.

Lean in to the life you have been given.

Share the fruits of plenty dangling
from the vine of your Divine Soul.

Together, let us create more space
welcoming everyone to dine.

Yes, even scraps are plentiful.

Today is a Feast, a feast of Thanks.

Lean In…
there’s room at the table.

 

 

Your Thoughts

Your Thoughts

Untie the strings
gathering the bouquet
wrapped around your
thoughts.

Breathe in the soft scents
of the petals alive and 
bleeding with colors.

Let fall those fragrant
soft shovels held around
each pistil.

Allow the flowers to submerge
into the dwelling place
that is you—
until thoughts
faintly visible
begin to hear
the gentle murmurs
of your heart.

Hear it?
Hold it?
Welcome its message!

Don’t be quick to 
understand it—
simply behold.

Don’t rush off
looking for miracles.

See yourself
as a miracle.
Created, created in
the image and likeness of______________.

Do you see yourself
as a miracle?

Now rise—
Go out with only that simple thought
and gaze upon
everything.
ALL things
created in the image 
and likeness
of sheer Goodness.

Your thoughts?

Drops of Color/ Empty Cupboard Shelves

Drops of Color

Empty Cupboard Shelves

Each item on the shelf
waiting to be received.

This cupboard full
—the anticipation of food supplies
    flying off these shelves
    to feed others.

Empty, empty, empty
the cupboards.

We can fill them again
and again and again
in hopes that one day
we can proclaim,

“No one shall be hungry…all are full.”

The cupboard shelves bare,
waiting to re-stock
from the surplus
right outside the door.

Pure manna from heaven.

Small Town

Small Town

In a small town,
all the doors to homes and businesses
were closed.

No one was out walking the streets—
even the traffic signals flickered,
a steady red on, off, on and off.

The church bells began to chime
at the same moment
the thunder struck.
Rain fell on this small town.

Suddenly, a window opened,
another was pushed out
followed by another.

A tiny hand reached out to
capture a drop.
This act was mimicked by
another small hand
reaching out from another window.

A game seemed to ensue.
‘Who would gather the most drops?’
Was there any significance?

Then, someone  wandering the streets,
‘arrived.’  Deluged by the storm, the 
hooded figure walked on.

The small hands gathering drops
seemed to know this stranger.
Out of their homes, the children came.

They approached the stranger.
Extending their hands,
they offered up the drops collected.

With glee, the stranger smiled and spoke,
“You understand, gathering drops of rain
is like speaking a prayer
without words.
We can change the world,
gathering drops of rain
to wash what needs to be healed.”

When the storm ceased,
countless buckets of water
were outside each establishment.
A few extra were in
the town center…
tiny creatures had come to sip and
had no fear.

The children left,
each one walking back to
their home.

The stranger vanished—
not a word spoken
but, a path made of drops
was visible beyond the town.

 

Drops of Color/ Home…again

Drops of Color

Home…again!

Your garment
changed in color
as the Season swept in.

You let-go.
The branch from which you dangled,
breathed a heavy sigh.

Landing upon wooden boards,
although you were not attached,
you felt yourself at home.

The connection—immediate.

The veins in your paper-like flesh
sought sustenance,
yet it was no longer needed as before.

You lie there beside others.
 A driving wind enveloped
whisking each of you away.

Carried off in every direction,
your destination—uncertain, unknown.

Still, you knew you were
making your way

Home—again! 

Message in a Bottle

Message in a Bottle

The ocean surged
and seemed to reach upward
pulling at raindrops, plucking
each one as if suspended from
a vine.

Standing on the ocean’s shore,
seafoam, like a blanket,
draped itself around my ankles.

Drenched was I, unmovable.
My feet inched deeper and deeper into the sand.

The tide rushed in
bringing with it a bottle.
I reached in time before
it engulfed me—
and…it pulled back out.

In my hand, I examined
the bottle containing a 
message.

It beat.

Was it my heart
or the pounding rain
drowning out any sound?

I opened the lid—
the paper slipped out.

I read each word.

I began to laugh out loud.

Did you, God, send this message
to me?

The rain splashing the page
caused each letter to vanish.

The note was not lost.
It became me—

now it is I who
carry the message from a 
bottle.

How I love a rainy day.

 

 

 

Drops of Color/ Notes

Drops of Color
Notes

Sheets set ablaze.
Scores of ballads ignited,
yet not consumed.

Every note a live ember
rising.

A perfect pitch
lights the rafters overhead
with music.

An inferno of sounds
cradles the room.

A blanket of crescendos
wraps around the listener.

Spellbound, the piece stoked
—a brief rest
—a crisp pop
—a sudden crackle
—sparks of vibrations
    extend coloring the pages.

Beyond the enclosure of the
concert hall,
a tiny bird flutters its
feathers.

When it sings,
the song inside itself falls like ashes
from heaven’s canopy.

Bravo, Bravo, Bravo.

Wings of flames
carry the sparks.

The sun calls it home,
setting into the western sky.

On the other side,
a fire being set
waits for wings to 
drop the flames.

The notes await
the conductor’s cue.

Chariots of fire
singe the sheets.

The song plays on
engulfed in cinder
holding a tune.

 

 

A Perfect Pitch

A Perfect Pitch…

as one petal 
unfolded into another
launching the ‘inner’ symphony,
one note after another
played itself.

The sweet scent perfumed
the air as each bellowing
trumpet unleashed an
Alleluia…

For this reason,
the flower’s purpose,
its sainthood revealed—short.

Yet, the song eternal.

Drops of Color/ A Patch

Drops of Color
A Patch

The land
—it was fertile.

In early spring
beneath the sun,
the guides,
they tilled and toiled.

The aroma of the upturned soils
mixed with manure
—spread.

Planted, were seeds set
apart row after row.

Great care given to
this patch of land…

An unspoken prayer
delivered by hands.

The guides worked from dawn to dusk.

Rains would fall as if a switch
clicked and then
delicate veins burst from
the womb, earth.
From her hid-den darkness,
she broke open
the fruit of her being.

Thanks offered, not with words.
The ritual of nurturing the soils
pressed on.

The plants drank the juice of
sunshine, unfolding leaves 
and gourds taking form.

Deep green shaped ovals
shaded beneath green leaves.
When night came,
a visitor, a welcomed guest,
entered the patch with
what appeared to be orange
paints.

One after another,
row by row,
the brush glided over
pumpkins.

Harvest 
picked with perfection.
Countless shapes
each one unique unto itself.

Inside seeds, countless seeds,
born in a single patch
with great care…

Thank you Great Pumpkin

 

 

 

My Little Friend

My Little Friend

His eyes do not see.

My little friend drifts
toward me as I call its 
name aloud.

Swiftly, a sailing vessel,
my friend glides in the
direction of my voice.

Gently, I let the fruit
‘splash’ into the water’s
depth.

My friend’s tail sways
left then right.
Without seeing, my friend
believes the fresh fruit
awaits.

Its nose sniffs until it
touches the bobbing apple.

Sinking its teeth into
the apple’s core, my friend
casts itself in my direction…

Who is the True Seer?

Into the darkness, my
friend begins to plunge
carrying food to share
with all.

 

Drops of Color/The Art of Unfolding

The Art of Unfolding

Waiting
    wait—ing.

Slowly, without any need
to push, prod, arch or
bend,
a change uncovers itself before
the eye can see.

A reality perceived—
a lifetime of endless attempts,
one pursuit after another.

Then, sitting quietly,
waiting,
the ripened unfolding made
manifest.

There was no need to do
anything.

Blossoming happens—the art
form everlasting.

 

Follow your heart…

Follow your heart…
Throughout the years, a Sojourner
—preparing, reaching, wandering, waiting, striving
—aching, grieving, struggling, forgiving, receiving
—pausing, refraining, serving, praying, offering—

A path Opens…
the heart discovers it was never closed.

The unique sound of its beating, the heart
recognizes and hears that same
‘beating’ in all living things.

In this House of Worship,
the trail is all inclusive, invitational, welcoming, transforming.

It is here the heart has
found its way Home,
and the only sound heard from parted lips,

“Thank YOU.”

 

 

Drops of Color/ Sets of Wings

Drops of Color

Sets of Wings

They wait.

A soft breeze
rises through the marsh
—the wings ‘jostle.’

A storm making its way
—the wings begin to dance.
    THIS, the moments they live for.

Gliding, whirling faster and faster
—a song breaks into the clamor
     of the monstrous roar
—they meet.

Wind and Wings
—creating a sound.

The Pilgrim
steadied in the turbulence
—cannot help but remain calm

while being deluged
and lulled
by the flapping of wind
and the wings
of the windmill.

 

 

Ignite

Ignite

Before you came to be,
as you are now,
a light was born in you.

You radiated with a splendor
set ablaze.

Nothing could hold back
your wonder
and, so you burst into
the world like a shooting
star…

This new place in which you found
yourself was new—
others carried your glow.

At times, it appeared taken
from you.
You were hidden, and
within, you knew this was 
not your destiny.

You set out and attempted
to fit into place.

Again and again, you were
cast in your own designer
shadows.

One night you stood beneath
the moon.
You pointed in its direction
and, your fingertip began to 
sparkle.

Suddenly, you were born
again, transformed,
rekindled.

The flame that is You,
set the world aglow.

Shine…only you
can cast the love you are
meant to ignite NOW.

 

Drops of Color/ Gather at the River

Drops of Color

Gather at the River

Remember the song?
The hymn?

Do you recall the reasons
for the voices rising
in harmony?

Was there a reason?

I am of the ‘ilk’ that all things do NOT
happen for a reason.

I gently hold we attempt to make ‘meaning’
of all things ‘flowing’—

How do we SEE what is in front of us,
around us, beside us, beyond us,
within us?’

Even the most dire of situations
—the circumstances that ‘break our hearts,’
—that drive us to our knees, that invite us
to join hands in prayer and collectively
groan with a Universe in labor
desiring to birth LOVE…
Can we birth love? 

I do not know how to ‘join’ humanity.
 I am trying to write,
sketch for those who literally cannot.
I Am walking a path with persons
seeking the same dreams,
to BE the change we hope to SEE
in this World…

“Shall we gather at the River…
Yes, we’ll gather at the river
The beautiful, the beautiful river
Gather with the saints at the river
That flows by the [grace] of God.”

Please…sing along—
lift your voice
—remaining silent stops the current
—carry your tune amidst the rapids.

Amen.

Let me Be Peace

“Preach the Gospel 
at all times.
Use words if necessary.”
                            ~~~Francis of Assisi

Let me Be Peace
(Journal Entry on the Camino St Francis/Sept. 2019)

In the heart
of a city,
lived a man whose song
plays on…

His journey was like an instrument
—One day a flute
—One day a guitar…
     and then a drum.

Birds rested on his shoulders,
and a story told how he
tamed a wolf.

Tell me why, Brother Francis,
you had to go~~~
although, I know.

One day
each of us will pass from ‘this’
place we know.

I pray, Gentle Francis, 
the traces we leave behind
be an imitation of yours.

Peace, I hope to leave
for NOW,
 is what I hope to be.

Let me be Peace…
In the silence of my being,
let there be Peace.

 

Drops of Color/ We Arrived Before You…

Drops of Color
We Arrived Before You…

The forests fashioned.
The jungles let down
their brawny vines.

Mountains wore caps
of dazzling white
tipping elegantly
—igniting a widening avalanche.

The sea opened.
Separate streams pouring
into an endless pool
that seemed to hoist
a fierce, fiery ball
at dawn’s arrival.

Deserts baked
—an oven exposing cracks
—looking closely, life loomed.

Yes, before humankind,
we were.  We arrived before you.

The land was vast.

Roaming freely
—there was the hunter
     and the hunted
—ONLY, to sustain life.

Our existence
dependent upon
a simple task:

Living our fullness.

We multiplied
—caring, nurturing
     our young.

   Some let their young
   go, others remained
with a pack.

A butterfly freed
itself from its
cocoon to flutter
into the day’s
fullness and then
it passed.

Fullness of life
—each knowing
    instinctively its path.

Then, you arrived.

The story changed.

We did not tell you
how to be.
Nor did we tell you
where your accommodations
would be.
We did not tell you what to eat,
how to eat.

We did not speak…well, not in
a language clear to you.

We had no idea that you were
to have dominion over everything
and that you were to look after
all things created.

We were here before you.

Please, let us live our fulness
that we once had.

We all can go on from here—
can’t we?

 

 

The Melody

The Melody

The rippling sounds of the water
moving swiftly are heard 
beneath the bridge’s archways.

The chiming of the church bells
from the craggy steeple joined
in the thunderous refrain
playing itself in the
mountain’s jagged peaks.

Walking this path, the sojourner’s steps
have done this a thousand
times, if not more…

yet, today—this time,
this hour is like no other.

Changed,
a heart entrusts the 
beating within the cavern of 
a Soul seeking a new path.

A bell rings
—it is not the waters
     below the bridge
—it is not the Abbey clanging
     the newly appointed hour
—and, it is not the roaring
     of thunder tucked between
     mountains and sky.

It is the music of a Pilgrim
stepping to the melody
born within.

 

Drops of Color/ A Change

Drops of Color
A Change

There is a change in the air.

The season has revealed
its timeless face
—Sun rising early
—Reflections of the sea
     in the blue skies overhead
—The gulls cry
     as the surf crashes into a shore
     laboring for the sea’s salt
     seeping into sands.

I have stood here
a myriad of times.
Yet, when I look out,
I see within a growing change.

What is it?
What are these words writing themselves?

They are waves
having passed this way before,
but now its movement different.

Like reading the same book twice
or listening to the Scriptures
—the same verse
—a hundred times
     yet, on the one hundred and first time
     there is a change.

How is it I never heard it
until now?

What opens the ear?

Silently, the sounds of the season
carry the vessel a last time
before the winter months
lift the sails.

Riding on the sea, side saddle,
the waves buck the bow.

Holding the rein,
the season speaks.
“I shall return
and so, too, you
—changed.”

Recalling what was,
holding the helm
carried in the direction
of the orange flame
lifting from the pool,

this sailing boat
trusts it is home.

What of this path…

What of this path

that speaks of my name
and yet, of itself, it holds
no identity.
Beckoning to my Soul,
it bids me, “Come, come…”

The painted path enraptured
within wooden pillars.

Thousands of arms
eased out from all sides
adorned with green fraying
leaves
—they seem like kites
     hovering effortlessly.
Their stems, like the kite’s
     tail, connected to the
     grandeur of each tree
     woven beside this nameless
     path.

I step.  It is no longer
my name I hear.
No, it is the name
connecting each of us…
—the hawk flying overhead,
—each blade of grass standing
    with ease,
—the soft breeze caressing
    my shoulders
—and, a soft whisper
     resounding from every direction,
    “I am.”

 

Drops of Color/ Dazzling Kernels

Drops of Color
Dazzling Kernels

The field was endless.

Stepping into one of the rows,
I softly made my way.

The stalks reached toward the clouds.

I crossed over into another row.

Time passed.
I lost any sense of direction
—the sun, my guiding post.

Here I was in 
a corn field.

I thought I heard
a crackle, then a pop.

Sitting in the middle
of this pleasant abundance,
I glanced noticing an ear.
Something , someone pulled it back.

Bright yellow dazzling kernels
layered like the rows I 
had been traversing.

I reached to pull it from
its coat of green leafy sheaves.

Suddenly, it was as if
my ‘reach’ held in time.

I heard, ‘Let me live long enough to die—
let my seeds fall, planting themselves…
let the birds carry them off, dropping a few
as they soar…’

See, see this pattern ‘in’ life…

Born from seed
—bursting from a sack.

Life, a harvest waiting
to be lived out.

Closure, returning to Earth—

Death

—it is not an end
    as we have been 
    led to believe

—it is a beginning
    into NEW tomorrows.

 

 

 

Spring Song

Spring Song

I heard your song for the
longest time.
I sat—listening.

A pen in hand,
your notes became words
on this page.

Still, it did not end
here…

No, it actually began
when the words began to
create your image.

Colors lit the page—
your song discovered
a new pitch.

Your wings fanned out,
growing in strength.
You would fly gain.

I hear it in your song.

 

 

Drops of Color/ Who Wins?

Drops of Color

Who Wins?

Victory will resound only
when, together, we
collectively ‘win.’

There is a time for 
everything as the writer of
Ecclesiastes pens.

We weep, we laugh.
We, mourn, we celebrate.
We sing, we sit in silence.

We pray ONLY to allow 
love to guide us.

 

 

The Cantor

The Cantor

The fulcrum held
—effortlessly left
—precisely right.

It was not time that set
the balance of hours
of light
and
others of dark.

It was the seamless
garment of creation
pulling back the covers.

Then, the Cantor arrived
needing no invitation.

The Cantor shook the stars…
Yes, each and everyone
as well as the new ones
expanding the Universe.

The Cantor danced upon the
earth releasing the soil
whose muddy perfumed
scent joined in the fresh morning dew.

The Cantor then began to 
knock on the trees…something,
someone was awake.

Leaves bedded down on 
the landscape began to rustle—
out they came.

The Cantor reached for a 
branch.  Pointing to an
owl, the Cantor beckoned
for a perfect pitch.

The lasting chord played
itself through a small slit
in a beak, and then, each creature
great and small
set the silence to the
melody of the season.

The chorus grows as the 
ponds wake to tadpoles…
the bullfrogs sing
in search of their one
true love.

The Cantor holds a pause
steadying momentarily to
listen…to simply listen.

There is more joy in this
held space, in this
mindful solace, than  a 
week long expedition
searching for what is here
NOW
and so, so good.

 

A Sling

A Sling

Metaphorically became
a cradle…
Mother Earth wrapping
herself around her child’s
wounded limb.

The fall was great.
The limb took the brunt
of the storm.

There still lingered moments
of the unknown.
What took place before
the tree, I am.

What tree describes me?

Is it the Oak?  My leaves
changing in extraordinary
color each year?

Or am I the Willow?
Weeping up the sweet
sustenance of life’s 
varied moistures?

Maybe I am a Pine…
endless tap roots connecting
me with this Universe and
beyond.

Mother Earth laughs aloud.
The cradle holds my limb
closely.

There is no space
between us.

Mother Earth lowers
her voice whispering
softly to her healing
sapling—

“You are part
of all three
AND
cradled so gently.”
I was fast asleep.

 

 

Drops of Color/ For her…

Drops of Color

For her…

I have written those
two words innately—‘for her.’

Only now
these two syllables burn into this
page like commandments
engraved on stone tablets—‘for her.’

For her
the ink spills from this pen
or is it a river
flowing from the corners of my eyes?

I wrote ‘for her
—the girl just about to go into the
     classroom a first time
—the feminine Soul who has already
     learned ‘letters,’
     has begun to form words and 
     is creating sentences
—the ‘She’ who has embarked
     on a path significantly making
     her way in the world as a person
     designed and fashioned
     in the divine image of Life.

—NOW, PLEASE DO NOT LET IT BE TAKEN AWAY—

For her
I bow and pray
that her identity not be shielded
—that her beauty and integrity not
    be covered or handed over
    as if, she, a mere possession.

I speak out for her,
I cannot hold back.

How long,
How long, Oh, Lord,
will you hear the weeping of ‘her’
and remain still?

Show me what to do,
and I’ll act in the
only way YOU are made
known to me.

Let me write a door way
of love
for her,
so that she might pass through
safely, freely.

She has already bore witness
to what ‘eyes’ should never see
or the body never experience.

For her

For her,
my ink runs dry.

Still, though You be,
I will write on

For her

 

Drops of Color/ In This Town

Drops of Color

In This Town

Somewhere
in this town,
You are.

I am not certain
I will find you,
but I know
You see me.

You often
lead me
to places “I Think”
you could never
be found.

Then…

I find you
—on every corner
—in between alleys
—on each cobble stone  walk
—dangling from window panes,
spacious courtyards,
and coffee shops.

I find a place to rest
and sit on a park bench.
You are sitting on the opposite end
reading the newspaper.

You pause
placing the paper between us.

The headline reads:
“I Found You”

I, who was
in search of You.

 

 

 

The Sound of Bells

The Sound of Bells

Quietly listening,
I heard the sound of bells
being played by the wind.

One soft chime—
its echo lasting as 
another breeze pulses
through the dangling metals.

Within, the chimes have found
the sacred center of my Soul.

Silently, I sit humming
a wordless refrain.

The sound of bells lingers
in the symphony of my
heart’s beating.

 

Drops of Color/ Cornerstones

Drops of Color

Cornerstones

These stones…

I continue creating
—archways
—windows
—bridges

These stones carry
stories as they were
—rolled into place
—hauled, lifted, chiseled.

Is there a cornerstone
holding them in place?

Is that what I am attempting
to find as I draw
yet another ‘stone’ edifice?

How is it these structures still
stand, no re-building
plans.

The hands that laid this work
—Unknown

Perhaps, in their own way
each a Cornerstone…

 

Inside…

Inside…

a beacon of light.

A lighthouse staggered
within rocks,
a sea curling beside
its halo.

Miles away, the casting
beams reach vessels adrift.

But, this vessel is in port.
It cannot see the light
inside itself…like one cannot see into one’s own eyes.

The light is visible only
to the One who sets it ablaze.

The warm embers inside
—they are felt
as much as the
light inside invisible.

There is a longing, a 
desire to share—if only
a spark.

Inside the window of
a Soul, a fire burns.

There is warmth inside,
even as one sees one’s
breath, beneath this
starry night.

 

 

 

Drops of Color/ Rosie

Drops of Color
Rosie…

rises on all fours.
Tiny paws already
revealing the size this pup
will one day be.

A tail swings back 
and forth like a metronome
especially when she hears her name
spoken aloud.

A soft step
followed by a playful tumble.
Now she rumbles into a pair
of limber legs.

Arms reach for her.
Rosie jumps with delight
attempting to wrap her
furry arms around a neck.

Her eyes glisten.
She always seems to adorn
a smile…
it’s that simple.

“…And they call it Puppy Love.”

Could it be so simple?

Just ask Rosie!

Who’s There?

Who’s There?

You again…
I heard you rush in.
You are welcome 
even when you seem to
topple over things, beings
and me!

Tonight, you have picked up
your pace.

I hear the branches outside
clicking, clacking, some
breaking…then the sound
of a loud thud touching down
—enveloped in earth.

Eyes closed…this is the
last moment I distinctly
remember.

I am here with you, and
your swift chill wraps
round me like a covering.

Chimes hanging upon the deck,
ring.

You write music to join your
ballad. I am so pleased you have
come.

Wait—

Let me get my dancing
shoes so that we can
greet the dawn.

Drops of Color/ Mansion

Drops of Color
Mansion

‘Inside’ this mansion,
the views ‘outside’
reveal the essence of
what IS The Mansion…
Yes, from ALL directions.

Left Handed…

Left Handed

Left handed…
right handed…
the memory retains the shape,
the formation of
consonants and vowels.

Spelling words out with the
use of the non-dominate hand
—a challenge
—an exercise of engagement.

I am so mindful of my every
breath as I curl an ‘e,’ as
I inhale an ‘o.’

I linger a tad longer
crossing the ‘t,’ dotting an ‘i.’

Such minute detail taken
for granted until one begins
to learn an old skill
in a new way.

We can learn to adapt,
adjust, pass on, carry on.

Change—external,
transforming us internal.

The wonderment given to
us is gift when what is
so ordinary to us—
taken (even if for a short while).

Do not wish this space
over soon…
It has much to tell,
to write…

Yes, left handed.

Drops of Color/ Wedding Garment

Drops of Color

Wedding Garment

The garment
—a natural design
—a fit needing no alterations
—feathers laid like a winnowing fan.

A blue painted sky
began the celebration.

The wedding feast
—an invitation to all.

The trees let loose—
The ground shook as sprigs of grass
stood tall like towering steeples.

Buttercups unraveled.

Why, even the wind stopped a moment
to honor the silence.
Silence…the opening hymn.

Wings spread themselves like open arms.
The sun lit the cathedral.

An open eye
scanned the vast assembly.

Everything had its place.

No words spoken—
No rings exchanged.

They took to the
sky and exchanged a 
wedded kiss.

The garment no longer two—
they flew as one.

Petals of white feathers
floated down
anointing the ground
blessing this
holy union.