The only unfortunate thing about Kandra’s book is that it’s meant only for Advent 2018, which means it’s not an evergreen book and I could see myself using it year after year. On the other hand, the fact that it coincides exactly with current events and culture is what makes The Living Gospel: Daily Devotions for Advent 2018 the gem that it is! Continue readingPlease visit Marge Fenelon to read the full post.
The poets would have us equate winter’s harshness with aging and death, a time of reconciliation and submission.
But winter attests nothing and teaches nothing, while the grave first seizes lost memories then feeds upon our mortal wounds. We are conceited patrons of both, and willing sellers besides.
But tonight we tarry at winter’s banquet as tomorrow soon enough arrives.
Image Credit: Pixabay
I have, perhaps, found my lad, though I am not sure how well he will like it. For that matter, I am not sure how well I will like it. His name is Luc Touchard. He’s a smaller lad than most in Bertrand’s crew, and he is both quick and quick-witted. He may have the Former’s Gift; I think he does, but it is too soon to tell
Ecclesia Semper Reformanda Est
-For the Reverend James Torrens, S.I.
Below many falls
when the Sun shown
the third hour’s
shadows and torn garments,
and sat looking over
the rapids as they fled
the trees’s sublimity.
Burnt beyond more
than all I had feared,
having forgotten Zion,
my right hand struck sulfur.
The smoke of the corpse of Babylon rose
carried East for what seemed ages upon ages
from my bound and rattling wrists and rigid dactyls:
a census was taken–lots cast for a seamless garment–
those of fighting age were counted,
those chained to the grain-mills were renumbered,
the rest–undesirable–were anesthetized and sterilized
while the world’s prince profited on infant blood
Drama is that very real story we tell ourselves, one that permits us to fully embrace the distance between us. Drama serves to disembowel our best intentions even as it secretes our naked humanity.
But it can be useful if we ultimately recognize drama for what it truly is. A raging, internal disquiet threatening to expose us to our own inconsolable loneliness.
Knowing that, perhaps the time and space between us may no longer seem insurmountable
Converting an ‘I’ to a ‘u’
-After His Excellency, the Most Reverend Thomas James Olmsted
Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more;
Or close the wall up with our English dead!
In peace there’s nothing so becomes a man,
As modest stillness and humility; –William Shakespeare, Henry V, Act III, Scene I
When father wrote to all his sons how they’d become good men,
He cried to them of virtue in the valley of our tears
To stir his sons to soldierly and overcome their fears,
“Take heart! For you are called to kneel together to defend!”
He signed, then raised his shield and cried the Wisdom of his years
To order, rank, and set we watchmen at each city gate
That when the Vandals charge the walls with ramparts and with spears
The call to arms could draw a battle line that none could break.
“Men, see this shield and see my tears and be so armed each day–
These both are swords I wield for you to fortify the way.
These swords are crosses we embrace in strife to spite all strife–
Are offered on the Cross’s Way through death unto new life…
Now be so armed! Now bear your wounds! Now nobly sacrifice!
Rebuke our Enemy! Route our Foe! Renounce the Liar’s lies!
Correct your brother’s evils and admonish every sin!
Who is like Him whose life, laid down, could take life up again?”
With she who stands behind our tears, we humbly bend our knee–
We vanguard shield, the Mantle of our Mother’s Victory:
Hail, Seat of Wisdom, bearing Mercy’s reign unto His Throne,
Each decade passing with your tears defends Our Father’s Home.
Sometimes, the journey forward reveals, but doesn’t demand of us, more than one rough and ready detour. With single minded pursuit, we judiciously dismiss the odds that serendipity will ever favorably align with our steps.
A wise, steely, prudent response is again summoned up. One which eternally anchors us to the cool, comfortable shadows, rather than allowing us to examine our deceptions through the hot, chaotic light.
But sometimes, if we are fortunate enough not to notice, the detour first takes us
After Auguste Rodin
Our contemplation long past twilight’s watch–
I spy upon our kiss of you I knew
whom I was formed to come to know.
Your reaching arm and all you are replace
the weighted crutch of mine upon my thigh
and I gaze down no more for your embrace.
What is unseen is pressing toward your lips
as your recline brings both your arms to hold
youth’s mystery of closer yet than this.
In letting go of all your reaching, arms
suspend you from succumbing to the grave
as life between us springs eternally.
I have no strength for else than raising you!
Sheer grace of elevating beauty kneels,
and kissing you where youth is born
this man continues falling from the flesh
still rising downward where our watch began:–
above the Gates below the Shades o’er Hell
I’ve not accomplished much writing. On Monday evening a call came in; my dear friend’s husband (I’ll call him Jim) had a massive stroke. Jim had been on the floor for over an hour when my friend arrived home and found him.
As a supplicant, my post through the night was in the oratory at vigil prayer. Tuesday morning I sent out word to other prayer-warriors, asking for God’s will for Jim to rebound to God’s own glory