St. Clare

Francis and Clare – Grace Cathedral, San Francisco

Place your mind before the mirror of eternity.
Place for soul in the brilliance of heaven.
Place your heart in the figure of the divine substance.

Transform your entire self into the image of the Godhead so that you too may feel and taste the hidden sweetness that God has reserved for his lovers.

On this feast day of St. Clare of Assisi, I offer this poem/prayer for all of us who may find it challenging to sit in quiet – to meditate or pray. Clare gives us an image of what meditation can be. 

In its simplicity, one step at a time – may we go to God in mind, soul and heart – to see ourselves in the mind’s mirror filled with the warm light of heaven and the sweetness of God’s love.  

(prayer found within a letter written to Agnes of Prague. St. Clare Prayer Book, author – Jon M. Sweeney)

To Share Thanksgiving…

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A day to be grateful for our abundance.
May our blessings strengthen us to reach out and support those in need. It doesn’t have to be complicated, We all have that is needed to offer care and shelter to a world seeking peace, shelter and sustenance.

Make me a tree, Lord
Sturdy
Deep rooted
Useful
Support
to those in need
Shelter
to those who are weary
Fruit
for those who hunger
Make me a tree, Lord
Sturdy
Deep rooted
Useful
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a sharing of the heart —

When I began writing a blog I did not realize how many people I might meet along the way. As connections were made it became clear that my words and thoughts would be shared with people in places far from where I call home. The diversity of writers and images have inspired my writing and encouraged me to stretch.

Each of us write with certain people and situations in mind. During these months of unpacking and resettling in a new town and home, I have grown to appreciate the writers who have become a new type of community for me. They are as diverse as the world we live in, sharing their perspectives and thoughts many forms.

Below I share a poem written by one such writer. Millie has appeared on my blog before and probably will again. Her words are honest and creative. She speaks from her heart and stirs the hearts of her readers.

Thank you, Millie.

Moments with Millie (a link to her blog)

I spoke to the sun searching
For the warmth of a mother     to hold
The fears to release                    me.

I cried to the earth
Looking for a father                 to comfort
The empty vessel                       inside.

I stared into the ocean
Hoping for the answers         to secrets
The heart cannot                     subside.

I touched the ground
Caressing its holiness          to give
The spirit inside                     certainty.

I smiled at myself
Knowing I am                       to allow
The wisdom of                      divinity.

I realized that by letting it out
I was finally free                 to be.

In honor of memory…

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MEMORIES AND STORIES

Sitting in the back of the Unit’s Dining Room,
laughing & laughing.
It all goes away, you understand, all the memories…
of family Sunday dinners & Midwest childhoods
& a young girl’s dance.
And more.

It ALL goes away, memories & stories
taking flight like birds that have stayed
too long in the Fall, and felt a North Wind.

Awayyyyyyyyyyyy it all goes,
even Dignity, of course —
until all that is left is
laughter & companionship.
What else really matters?

A Flock of Memories will wait for us
on the far side of The Green Hill,
like children excited at our Return. Words by Scott Fisher

For more reflections and inspiration visit:
Episcopal Cafe

On the eve of Epiphany

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A reflection by Jay Johnson. May light shine for all to see!   Holy Flesh

“Seasons change and so do I…” (a re-post)

To friends and readers this post was entered with a portion missing from the quoted poem, Edge of September. In respect for the poet, Jeanie Tomasko, and to complete the original reflection, I have discarded last night’s work and now re-post what was originally intended. Thank you for your patience!

“Seasons change and so do I…” – a line from the song, “No Time”, written and sung by THE WHO. It was a song that proudly played from my dorm room window on speakers cranked loud enough to reach two other dorms and a field used for tag football and sun bathing. That was when ‘serious’ studying was set aside. It was too difficult to resist the call of Boulder’s Colorado sun. When I hear this song I can swiftly return to that time in my life – formative and filled with possibilities.
On October 1, I will have been retired four months. While reflecting on my own changes, I found myself singing this line from “No Time”. It was the thought of seasons that brought the words to mind. There is no surprise that one reflects on the changing seasons now. The days are getting shorter. I read in yesterday’s weather report — today the sun would set two minutes and twenty-three seconds earlier. It does not take a written report to know that summer is waning. Evenings are cooler – the trees are beginning to show highlights of gold and red in their leaves. I have always enjoyed “transition seasons”.  These seasons seem to act as a bridge between winter’s cold and the breathless heat of summer.
This fall I am particularly aware of how life can reflect the nature of seasons. In the heat of this past summer, my new life in retirement felt uncomfortable, still too bright for me to find focus. As in other times of change in my life, I continued to be grateful for God’s grace in each day’s rhythm. Too tired and distracted with details, I would have been unable to tend to the sun’s rising and setting.
Now, I seem to welcome these early days of fall. With four months of retirement behind me, I sense the beginning of a pattern to my days — the words rest and relax feel less foreign. These early days of fall remind me that all of creation knows the stress and creative energy found in times of transition. With gratitude, I welcome fall as I prepare to receive its guidance and calming pace.

Edge of September

Again this year it comes:
the shift in the wind
that certain slant of sun
the sudden red of sumac.
Out at the lake
birdsong is less urgent,
the young can feed themselves.
In a few days
something like light
will tug on wings.
I am at home with
the downside of summer.
I take stock of the woodpile.
Night comes earlier. The space
between cricket chirps, longer.
I’ve stopped coloring my hair.

My husband fingers the gray
as if learning a tenderness.

Jeanie Tomasko