2o Contemplations #17:

Silent Harmony Painting by Wassily Kandinsky; Silent Harmony Art Print for sale
Wassily Kandinsky, “Silent Harmony”

…the music seems to come out of the silence like the colors come out of the night…
(Olivier Messiaen)

After such a climax, what reflection?
Light refracts from His glory; sun and moon
bow. Let all mortal flesh keep silent. Soon,
very soon, we shall see His intention
erupt in purposed rapture. Explosion
of brightness dancing will colour His tune:
now mauve, now gold, now rose, now violet-bloom,
more radiant than mind’s widest conception.
So stop. Silence best befits a king
when all our lips are broken, our tongues split.
Let the Word be our only word. Let Light
illuminate the dark of our speaking.
What crowns we weave for Him can never fit;
all space dances around Him, bursting, bright.

 

Damascus Road: Midday

image

Indeed, my friends, let us not forget in our wakefulness…
(Saint Ephraim the Syrian, Hymns of the Nativity)

Do I assume this peace?
Some peasants once, I am told,
when they had had enough of false liberty,
took cobblestones and made them missiles.
And men of another age were warned
that their panelled houses could fall,
while others, trusting horses,
were told whom they should fear.

For the quiet of now, give thanks.
The sun is your friend today and streets whistle with silent birdsong.
Later, I may collect chairs from the street or sit in a library to read.
But remember the shelves which Eratosthenes kept,
more famous for ruin than what they contained.
Look for the library without any walls;
look for the Word which shines like today.
Bend knees as you walk or stones will rise up.
Today’s beauty must make you bow.

Lent: Humility 6

Teacher, they say, grant us whatever we ask of you.
Assumptions rich in self, they see
a throne, and seats on either side;
surely theirs? For what other reason do they fight?

Yet His kingdom is not of this world;
its great ones do not presume, nor grasp.
Losing and finding self, they serve,
seeing the king Himself on His knees.

Here it begins: on knees;
and it ends here too, for humble delight
is eternal delight, having nothing to lose but the object of its joy.

So far to go, I cannot go further than this;
I kneel, confess, rip off my face.
If worship is bowing, then see, O my king,
this death of self now as my song.

Catechism 41

lordsprayer

What is the Lord’s Prayer?

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we have also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

(New City Catechism)

 

Hands upraised,        hands open
        imploring              yet worshipping
receiving              yet giving
        asking                 yet content
forgiven               and forgiving
        on earth,              as it is in heaven;
now                    forever
        delivered             yet
              daily caught in moments’ fear…

Our Father     here    and Heaven’s king:
            teach us how to pray.

Too Much Light 6: Prepare Your Crowns

Come,

let us

walk

in the light

of the

 

 

                        Lord:

the light is blinding   and

the days are long; the sun

confuses us, the bustle deafens.

 

Lord:

let us walk.

 

Let’s leave our cars, our homes, our days

and walk.

The Son has stories brighter than noon,

pavilions for the rising of the brightest morning,

and ways that feet must slow to learn.

 

But come.

Prepare your crowns, prepare

your heads to bow before

His crown.

 

Prepare the day, to slow, to greet

this child,

bright as Day.

Lent 19: Third Sunday of Lent

Francois Perrier - Moses Draws Water from the Rock
Francois Perrier – Moses Draws Water from the Rock
           Meanwhile
we clutch unflinching rock with closed fists,
willing water with dusty souls,
           palms closed
and eyes fixed groundward.
 
            Somehow
our hearts lock over each passing grief and seal
themselves around each rock
            as though
our minds could read eternal.
 
            Although
streams do not yet flow out from the ashen earth,
come sing: His hands have formed
            dry ground
and the wild stirring of the seas.

Catechism 9

What does God require in the first, second 
and third commandments?
First, that we know and trust God as the only 
true and living God. Second, that we avoid all 
idolatry and do not worship God improperly. 
Third, that we treat God’s name with fear and 
reverence, honoring also his Word and works.
(New City Catechism)

The Beginning of all things,
begin with Him:
know, trust, serve.
What breath have you
that did not pour forth from His mouth?
what life, what sight
that did not emanate from Him?

Is He contained within
the stars, the moon,
the patterns of the soil
that you may draw
a set of lines on a cave's wall and declare,
here He is! or carve
His likeness out of wood?

And what is His name
that you can barter,
beg, lie, steal
armed with it in your carry-bag,
a totem, a charm,
a licence to twist and turn His will
as though He were potters' clay.

You are the clay. Remember,
children of Adam,
the soil, the breath,
the hands that shaped and formed.
And bow; you are His likeness. Be
before Him as His image; bow
before Him and begin.