Featured Poems
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poetry

Our death is our wedding with eternity.
What is the secret? "God is One."
The sunlight splits when entering the windows of the house.
This multiplicity exists in the cluster of grapes;
It is not in the juice made from the grapes.
For he who is living in the Light of God,
The death of the carnal soul is a blessing.
Regarding him, say neither bad nor good,
For he is gone beyond the good and the bad.
Fix your eyes on God and do not talk about what is invisible,
So that he may place another look in your eyes.
It is in the vision of the physical eyes
That no invisible or secret thing exists.
But when the eye is turned toward the Light of God
What thing could remain hidden under such a Light?
Although all lights emanate from the Divine Light
Don't call all these lights "the Light of God";
It is the eternal light which is the Light of God,
The ephemeral light is an attribute of the body and the flesh. ...
Oh God who gives the grace of vision!
The bird of vision is flying towards You with the wings of desire...

--Rumi (Mystic Odes 833)

*******

HELD

Shut up, enclosed, limited, restricted?
Held in the purposes of God.

I cannot come forth!
My Lord has hedged me around,
His wings hover over me,
His strong pinions encage me,
Enclosed in the purposes of God.

If He loose me would I come forth?
Forth without Him - into the void?
Forth from the purposes of God?
A thousand times no! His prisoner am I,
Shackled in the purposes of God.

His mark is upon me, my ear pierced
Upon the doorpost where was put the Blood
Of obedience - even unto death -
The Blood of the greater piercing
And obedience of the Lamb of God

Here am I, Lord, send me!
Here am I, Lord, keep me!
Cleansed, whole and holy,
Ready to go or stay, or be:
Content in the purposes of God!

--Jeannette Parry

 

This, this alone thy father careth for--
That men should live hearted throughout with thee-
Because the simple, only life thou art,
Of the very truth of living, the pure heart.
For this, deep waters whelm the fruitful lea,
Wars ravage, famine wastes, plague withers, nor
Shall cease till men have chosen the better part.

--George MacDonald

*******

From all my lame defeats and oh! much more
From all the victories that I seemed to score;
From cleverness shot forth on
Thy behalf At which, while angels weep, the audience laugh;
From all my proofs of Thy divinity,
Thou, who wouldst give no sign, deliver me.

Thoughts are but coins. Let me not trust, instead
Of Thee, their thin-worn image of Thy head.
From all my thoughts, even from my thoughts of Thee,
O thou fair Silence, fall, and set me free.
Lord of the narrow gate and the needle's eye,
Take from me all my trumpery lest I die.


C. S. Lewis --- 'The Apologist's Evening Prayer'

*****

GOD OF THE NEBULAE

Lover of all, I hold me fast by Thee,
Ruler of time, King of eternity,
There is no great with Thee, there is no small,
For Thou art all, and fillest all in all.
The new-born world swings forth at Thy command;
The falling dewdrop falls into Thy hand.
God of the firmament’s mysterious powers,
I see Thee thread the minutes of my hours.
I see Thee guide the frail, the fading moon
That walks alone through empty skies at noon.
Was ever way-worn, lonely traveller
But had Thee by him, blessed Comforter?
Out of my vision swims the untracked star;
Thy counsels too are high and very far –
Only I know, God of the nebulae,
It is enough to hold me fast by Thee.

-- Amy Carmichael.

 

A Christmas Poem...

Given, not lent,
And not withdrawn, once sent,
This Infant of mankind, this One,
Is still the little welcome Son.

New every year,
New-born and newly dear,
He comes with tidings and a song,
The ages long, the ages long.

Even as the cold
Keen winter grows not old,
As childhood is so fresh, foreseen,
And spring in the familiar green.

Sudden as sweet
Come the expected feet.
All joy is young, and new all art,
And He, too, whom we have by heart.

... Alice Meynell (1847-1922)

 

 

 

From: Diary of An Old Soul, George MacDonald

My God, it troubles me I am not better.
More help, I pray, still more. Thy perfect debtor
I shall be when thy perfect child I am grown.
My father, help me - am I not thy own?
Lo, other lords have had dominion o'er me,
But now thy will alone I set before me:
Thy own heart's life - Lord, thou wilt not abhor me!

 

 

We as God's Sheep Find Solace Within Community...


George MacDonald

Lo, now thy swift dogs, over stone and brush,
After me, straying sheep, loud barking, rush.
There's Fear, and Shame, and Empty-heart, and Lack,
And Lost-love, and a thousand at their back!
I see thee not, but know thou hound'st them on,
And I am lost indeed - escape is none.
See, there they come, down streaming on my track!

 

This little sheep can climb no windswept tree.
Death, Regret, Remorse & Despair track me!
Thistles and saltwort sting my matted fleece
The longer I flee thy justice and peace.
My elders were shorn, killed - I fear their fates;
A hush falls, the barking of dogs abates....
I'm lifted, loved, woven into thy "We"!

 

____________________________ooooooo____________________________

 

John McCrae's "In Flanders Fields"
remains to this day one of the most
memorable war poems ever written.
It is a lasting legacy of the terrible
battle in the Ypres salient in the spring
of 1915.

The Making of the Poem

In Flanders Fields

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
......In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
......In Flanders fields.

 



From "Diary of an Old Soul"
George MacDonald

In holy things may be unholy greed.
Thou giv'st a glimpse of many a lovely thing,
Not to be stored for use in any mind,
But only for the present spiritual need.
The holiest bread, if hoarded, soon will breed
The mammon-moth, the having-pride, I find.
'Tis momently thy heart gives out heart-quickening.

 

 

"Autumn Within"
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

IT is autumn; not without
But within me is the cold.
Youth and spring are all about;
It is I that have grown old.
Birds are darting through the air,
Singing, building without rest;
Life is stirring everywhere,
Save within my lonely breast.
There is silence: the dead leaves
Fall and rustle and are still;
Beats no flail upon the sheaves,
Comes no murmur from the mill.

 

*The Flower*
George Herbert

How fresh, O Lord, how sweet and clean
Are thy returns ! Ev'n as the flowers in spring;
To which, besides their own demean,
The late-past frosts tributes of pleasure bring.
Grief melts away
Like snow in May,
As if there were no such cold thing.

Who would have thought my shrivel'd heart
Could have recover'd greennesse? It was gone
Quite under ground ; as flowers depart
To see their mother-root, when they have blown;
Where they together
All the hard weather,
Dead to the world, keep house unknown.

These are thy wonders, Lord of power,
Killing and quickning, bringing down to hell
And up to heaven in an houre ;
Making a chiming of a passing-bell.
We say amisse,
This or that is :
Thy word is all, if we could spell.

O that I once past changing were,
Fast in thy Paradise, where no flower can wither !
Many a spring I shoot up fair,
Offring at heav'n, growing and groning thither :
Nor doth my flower
Want a spring-showre,
My sinnes and I joining together :

But while I grow in a straight line,
Still upwards bent, as if heav'n were mine own,
Thy anger comes, and I decline :
What frost to that ? what pole is not the zone,
Where all things burn
When thou dost turn,
And the least frown of thine is shown?

And now in age I bud again,
After so many deaths I live and write ;
I once more smell the dew and rain,
And relish versing : O my onely light,
It cannot be
That I am he
On whom thy tempests fell at night.

These are thy wonders, Lord of love,
To make us see we are but flowers that glide :
Which when we once can finde and prove,
Thou hast a garden for us, where to bide.
Who would be more,
Swelling through store,
Forfeit their Paradise by their pride. '

''The Flower'' by George Herbert (1593-1633) as found in: *Devotional Poets of the 17th Centruy* with introduction by Sir Henry Newbolt Thomas Nelson & Sons LTD London & Edinburgh (undated)