April is National Poetry month. As we at Cranaleith accompany you through these anguishing days, we’d like to periodically offer you some poems to carry our presence and our prayer to you. Do you have a favorite poem you’d like to share that might touch someone else as it has graced you? Please post it below or send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Following are some submitted by our readers. Thank you for your blessing and support.
MOTHER 2020 by Linda Barrett
The roles are reversed:
You used to do all the wash
And the house work
Now, it’s me who
Gets you up every morning
Dressing you in clothes
Make sure you’re warm enough
To go outside for day care.
Drive you to the doctor’s
Even in the pouring rain.
Wake you up every Sunday
In order that we can go to church
Fold up your walker
And stow it in the back seat.
You forget who I am
Ask to go back to Feasterville
Where you spent your youth
I go to bed tired
At 10 P.M.
Wondering if it’s worth it.
You climb the stairs
Holding onto the bannisters
Come into my room
“I love you.”
EASTER SUNRISE by Rosemary Koch
Early on this Easter morning,
a light so bright, so breathtaking…..
I watched a sunrise as never seen before!
This event in the midst of these dark days….
was a display of Devine power. Alleluia. Alleluia…….
a private revelation to my eyes….unveiled the host (sun)
in the midst of rays of the cross !!!
Alleluia, my Lord, my hope will reign.
SUNFLOWERS by Rosemary Koch
I saw the sunflowers
They even greeted me at the door.
It brought back a memory of a time before,
when that stately flower was something more.
They stood tall and smiling in St. Anne’s flower bed; and in the fall some seeds we shared, which grew well past my head !
The seeds went back and forth for a couple of years, and along with other seeds that were planted, had some sunshine and some rain……can now bow down to the Son.
I still have 🌻 in my yard; in addition to the fact they grow past their weeds, they have become symbols of gratitude for those who plant seeds.
PRAYER by Ruth Z. Deming
Let us remember to stay safe.
Let us take no chances.
Let us rely on ourselves and the kindness of neighbors.
Let us wash our hands and believe we will make it through.
Yes, Almighty, we will make it through.
I pray that all at Cranaleith be blessed with good health, healing, and courage at this difficult time. With love, Mary Richardson Miller
THE PEACE OF WILD THINGS by Wendell Berry
When despair for the world grows in me and I wake in the night at the least sound in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be, I go and lie down where the wood drake rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
Submitted by Ruth Z. Deming
SARAH, BARREN, BEARS FRUIT by Janet Ruth Falon
She is no longer a young woman.
Blood still flows, but less red, less rich,
and finally, she understands
and starts laughing.
As she opens her mouth
a branch issues forth
as if from her belly,
covered with little crackly leaves and blood-red apples,
firm, and imperfectly round and shiny
as if polished by hand.
She laughs, delighted, and looks down
and sees her legs become a pear-tree trunk
and when she wiggles her roots with joy
more than a minyan of fruit fall
unbruised, perfectly ripe.
She laughs, amazed,
and when she lifts her arms
they become branches of an orange tree,
laden, heavy, ready to be plucked.
And from the tips of her fingers spring clusters of grapes
more purple than red, with seeds.
She laughs, loving this change of life,
and from her belly button creep tomato vines
with oval plums
the perfect red
while her nipples burst
that she will gift to every child she knows.
and her fruit shakes like a windstorm.
When pieces fall
she is replenished,
and when she squats with her weight
she bears honeydew,
Dear staff at Cranaleith, I love that you are reaching out and inviting us into sacred space together…thank you SO much for doing this! God bless you all, Joanne Castner
Prayer of Teilhard de Chardin By dotMagis Editor
Above all, trust in the slow work of God.
We are quite naturally impatient in everything to reach the end without delay.
We should like to skip the intermediate stages.
We are impatient of being on the way to something unknown, something new.
And yet it is the law of all progress
that it is made by passing through some stages of instability—
and that it may take a very long time.
And so I think it is with you;
your ideas mature gradually—let them grow,
let them shape themselves, without undue haste.
Don’t try to force them on,
as though you could be today what time
(that is to say, grace and circumstances acting on your own good will)
will make of you tomorrow.
Only God could say what this new spirit
gradually forming within you will be.
Give Our Lord the benefit of believing
that his hand is leading you,
and accept the anxiety of feeling yourself
in suspense and incomplete
—Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, SJ, excerpted from Hearts on Fire
This poem, ‘Blessing when the world is ending” was written by Jan Richardson. It was used in a Sanctuary of Peace service. I keep it in a folder of poems I wish I had written but didn’t. Thank you for the chance to share. Adrienne Jenness
BLESSING WHEN THE WORLD IS ENDING
Look, the world
is always ending
Somewhere the sun has come
it has gone
it has ended
with the gun
Somewhere it has ended
with the utter quiet
that follows the news
from the phone,
the hospital room.
it has ended
with a tenderness
that will break
this blessing means
to be anything
It has not come
to cause despair.
It is simply here
because there is nothing
is better suited for
than an ending,
nothing that cries out more, for a blessing
than when a world
is falling apart.
will not fix you,
will not mend you
will not give you
it will not talk to you
about one door opening
when another one closes.
It will simply
sit itself beside you
among the shards
and gently turn your face
toward the direction
from which the light
as the world begins
Submitted by Mary Montgomery
BENEDICTION by Bernadette Miller
May you taste the colors of sunset,
may you touch the chorus of dawn,
may your eyes turn toward the beauty
even when it’s gone.
May you weave a path of blessing
through ecstasy and grief.
May you tend the flame within you
may you feed it with belief.
May you find yourself in strangers
and meet them within you.
May you trust that we are windows
the world is peering through.
May you linger in each moment,
receiving with your heart
the gift of possibilities
that presence can impart.
May you become a portal
to the love behind your toil,
may you become a silence
within the world’s turmoil.
May the prayers that grow within you
bloom in many lands.
We are woven of connections
and peace is in our hands.