Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Into Canna

Before the heat of the summer day
I walk to my garden, the breeze being cool.
Pick just a few cucumbers, beans and zucchini.
Lift onions and carrots that cling to the soil.
The mourning doves sound like the voice of omniscience,
Singing serenity from opposite sides.
One east, just occasional, distant but soothing.
One west, more persistent, and nearer to me.
There may be more doves in the distance sweet-singing,
Bringing their message for ears that can hear.
I tether tomato vines, brush off mosquitoes,
Then walk to the house with my harvest of peace.

Morning Glory    

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Longer Boats Are Coming To Win Us

My thoughts:
For so long I've held onto the shore
waiting for the tide to recede
my muscles are aching my fingers bleed.
For so long I've waited in silence and dark
imagining the blessing of just one small spark.
So long I have carried the stabbing pain

hoping  for ease, but the wound remains.
The tide still pulls, the dark surrounds,
and still I listen for one small sound.
I do not know what it will be,
perhaps a trumpet tuned just to me.
For so long I've only said honest words,
the deepest wish is just to be heard.
Must You really demolish completely my faith?
Until You answer I will wait.

This week I read Margaret Frazer's The Maiden's Tale. P. 89: "She did not say the rest: her deep  longing  to go beyond the world's illusions and passing pleasures into pure reality, beyond all pretences into knowing things as they truly were."
And then, on the last page, I read this, p. 244-5: "Know that not with corruptible gold or silver were you ransomed. Not with worldly gold or silver or any of the things they bought, but with Love...Love strong enough beyond the world's uses...she herself would go gladly back...Go back to prayers at the proper hours and nunnery matters to worry over and chance to draw quiet into her soul again out of the great silence of God. A silence more rich to her than all the noise and flailings of the world. The silence of Love."

I will think about God's silence as being the silence of something I can draw on...

Friday, July 18, 2014

If there is no meaning to life past these days,
the pleasures we take will stand on their own.
The love we have given, received, will be priceless,
but destined to end with decay of our bones.
Each day a new sunrise tells of new beginnings,
just so may someday the sun be outshone.
Sometime and somewhere we will waken to newness
to find our dreams have been wildly outflown.
We will do so much better and farther and more,
it will leave all the best of our deeds far outdone.
Somehow there may be, as likely as springtime,
a season when all we know will be outknown:
someday to outsee all these eyes ever saw
in this world, outbe all existence we've known.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

I woke out of a sound sleep one morning, with an image of a jumbled and scattered pile of variously shaped blocks in the attic of my mind...

In everyone's mind, there is a pile of blocks. Different shapes, different sizes, scattered about.
Some people try to fit the blocks together. Some people take one look at the blocks and throw up their hands in despair, thinking they can never all fit together. Some people start trying to organize their blocks, but try not to think about it. Some people fear the pile of blocks, and seek diversion.
Everyone is bothered by the blocks.
For some people, it is enjoyable to keep trying to build a structure out of the blocks. They will spend hours turning over pieces, studying specific corners of specific shapes. Sometimes this helps and sometimes it doesn't. They may try to tell others about how they could fit certain shapes together, but the blocks are hard to put into words. This helps some people, and doesn't help others.
Some people can know at a glance how a few pieces fit together easily, and never need to think about it for long. They seem to have a natural feel for it, and are pleasant people to be around.
When pieces are fit together correctly, a person feels good. There is a little tiny glow in the joined pieces that is pleasing to look at, and makes those people treat others around them in a better way.
Some people, oddly, never touch their blocks, but go along in life only ever following the instructions of someone else. Someone tells them here is a net that will hold your blocks together, and it is the only way. They throw this net over their blocks and there is a little tiny glow in their net, and they feel like they are feeling better. Then they stick close to other people who have thrown the same kind of net over their own blocks, and try not to look at their own blocks too closely, satisfied that their blocks problem is all settled. They act like they are nice to everyone because they are the People Of the Correct Block Solution. POCBS's will do anything to hang onto their nets. Very few of them ever move their blocks around to make a more structure-like arrangement, but there is always hope they might.

Everyone, or almost everyone, knows somehow, whether by looking carefully at their little block fitting successes, or hearing about it from others, that there very possibly is a great likelihood that if ever all the blocks are perfectly arranged, and lined up in a most harmonious way so that they all fit together, something magical will happen. The whole blocks pile structure will glow so beautifully that it will actually lift off and hover gracefully in the mind of anyone so fortunate. It may even hum in a most amazingly pleasant way. It is not known if anyone has ever completely built the blocks to perfection, but it is thought possible. There certainly seem to be many people that have their blocks together, at least in a better way than others around them.
There are some people that call themselves Experts On Blocks. Some really are, some are not. It seems that if someone really knows blocks, they are nicer to the people and world around them. More caring. But some people become obsessed by the blocks and don't seem to care about anything else.
Some people can see the blocks quite clearly and are comfortable with the idea of the blocks existing, always there and needing to be dealt with. Some unfortunates have a clouded vision of the blocks, and live frustrated lives. It is not always their fault. We should be kind to them. A curious thing about being kind, if it is authentic kindness: it may actually move some of your blocks to a better position.
Some people paint all their blocks in garish colours and use false glues, and build some kind of construction, and call it beautiful.
Anyone at any time, whether they have started to work with their blocks or not, can have disaster strike. All of their blocks may be struck, as if by lightning, or as if a fierce and horrible slow force pulls terribly at them constantly, so that their blocks are hopelessly scattered, partially destroyed, or sadly lumped in a weld of confusion. In short, chaos of blocks. They are devastated. This is difficult to communicate, and of course no one can see their block piles. Some can tell others about their trouble to some extent. Some cannot. Some people who listen to this problem are comforting and understanding and encouraging. Some people are not, and just say get your blocks together, man, or I managed to pull my blocks into a pile so you should too. Some devastated people eventually have some success working at their blocks again. Some don't. Some never try again, too scarred and scared and sad. They might get help. They might not.
Some people say the problem of the blocks will never go away, and why are we burdened with blocks anyway! Some people say but look how when I get two blocks that fit together perfectly there is that little beautiful glow, and what a wonderful thing it would be if I could get more and more blocks together with a little more glow each time and a little more kindness in me, and how wonderful that we get to handle and grapple with these blocks!
May you get your blocks together.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

She is four years old and she runs with her elbows.
Doesn't like stones in her sandals.
Loves to make friends, give hugs, get kisses.
The world is her friend and there's so much to learn.
Falls down but gets up again, says "I'm okay!"
And runs with her elbows to welcome the day.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

The Evolution of Adam: What the Bible Does and Doesn't Say about Human OriginsThe Evolution of Adam: What the Bible Does and Doesn't Say about Human Origins by Peter Enns
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Having enjoyed the content on Peter Enns's blog, I decided to read this book on the recommendation of my husband, who is not nearly as avid a reader as I am, but managed to read this book before I did. It required a little more concentration in reading, but it was well worth the effort.
Enns builds a good case for retaining the best of the Biblical message without having to deny the facts of science and evolution, beginning with the Biblical account of creation compared to the ancient accounts of the cultures at that time, the purpose of Genesis and the structure of it as we now have it, moving on to Paul's treatment of Adam in the new testament, and on to the "creaturely" nature of Scripture itself, as another way God "take(s) on humanity when he speaks..." (p. 144), "We are to see the divine in and through the human words of the writers."
I found the final message of the book to be hopeful and uplifting. We are encouraged to "a willingness to rethink our own convictions", which is sometimes difficult. Despite some rather loud voices declaring any faith in God to be "bankrupt" in our scientifically enlightened age, Enns is not ready to "toss away" spiritual belief..."not because I refuse to see the light, but because the light of science does not shine with equal brightness in every corner. There is mystery. There is transcendence." (p. 148)

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Saturday, July 5, 2014

2014 Summer Leaf Collection


Meadow Rue

Black Poplar

Trembling Aspen


I remember collecting leaves.
I remember scrapbooks, those newsprint blank pages
waiting for me.
I remember bottles of clear amber glue
with a rubber snout
to spread the glue with after squeezing it out.
And placing the days-flattened leaves
just so on the page
then, lips pressed firmly to my slightly projecting tongue,
writing intensely (don't make a mess) the tree's name
that it came from, just underneath.
And the half hour dusty school bus ride back home
from the small prairie town
to our small family farm
where trees grew along the creek
and in the pastures wherein we ran barefoot
to bring the cows home for their evening milking.

It's all brittle bits now,
with much of it missing,
small empty spaces where leaves used to be.
Even the glue of the leaves of the scrapbook
lets go, and they flutter away.