Posts tagged ‘moon’
Today’s Lenten poem from Education for Justice is by Thomas Merton.
When wind and winter turn our vineyard
To a bitter Calvary,
What hands come out and crucify us
Like the innocent vine?
How long will starlight weep as sharp as thorns
In the night of our desolate life?
How long will moonlight fear to free the naked prisoner?
Or is there no deliverer?
A mob of winds, on Holy Thursday, come like murderers
And batter the walls of our locked and terrified souls.
Our doors are down, and our defense is done.
Good Friday’s rains, in Roman order,
March, with sharpest lances, up our vineyard hill.
More dreadful than St. Peter’s cry
When he was being swallowed in the sea,
Cries out our anguish: “O! We are abandoned!”
When in our life we see the ruined vine
Cut open by the cruel spring,
Ploughed by the furious season!
As if we had forgotten how the whips of winter
And the cross of April
Would all be lost in one bright miracle.
For look! The vine on Calvary is bright with branches!
See how the leaves laugh in the light,
And how the whole hill smiles with flowers:
And know how all our numbered veins must run
With life, like the sweet vine, when it is full of sun.
Today’s Lenten poem from Education for Justice is by William F. Bell.
It is our emptiness and lowliness that God needs, and not our
plenitude. —Mother Teresa
Somehow by day, no matter what,
I patch myself together whole,
But all my effort can’t offset
The nightly nakedness of soul
When angels in a dark descent
Strip off my integument.
I am a cornered rebel pinched
Between night’s armies and my lack,
And when inside the bedclothes hunched
I feel the force of their attack,
I hardly know what I can do,
Exposed to God at half-past two.
I once believed my being full,
But night thoughts prove that it is not.
Waking scared and miserable,
I scrape the bottom of the pot
And then must bow down and confess
Totality of emptiness.
Kings once ventured, it is said,
To offer gold and frankincense,
But I send nothing from my bed
Except a tattered penitence,
So very little has accrued
From years of doubtful plenitude.
God who tear away my cover,
Oh, pour your Spirit into me
Until my emptiness runs over
With golden superfluity,
And I bow down and offer up
Yourself within my earthen cup.
Source: “Night Thoughts” by William Bell from America Magazine, Vol. 187 No.
I found the following Advent Prayer on the Education for Justice website.
The Winter Journey of Advent
In this time of darkness,
We choose to look toward the Light.
In this time when so many suffer,
We choose faith, not despair:
We choose the work of compassionate justice.
As we move through Advent together,
Hungry for transformation, for hope,
Our steps themselves
Transform us, nourish us.
We are on constant pilgrimage,
Moving to the heart of things,
Reaching beyond what any one of us
Can reach alone.
The brightness of the incarnation
Guides us as we continue,
With the promise of the Prince of Peace
As the bright star in these dark nights.
The Persian Sufi Bayazid does not quote the Prophet Micah. Nonetheless, his words reflect the same meaning, and encourage us to live with generosity, compassion, and humility.
The Friend of God has these three qualities:
a generosity like that of the ocean,
a compassion like that of the sun, and
a humility like that of the earth.
One of my favorite poets is Hafiz. I thought of his poem a couple of weeks ago when I saw this moon . . . not even full.