Rosary tied to box spring beneath where my father slept. God, have mercy on him. He did not worship You, but lived You in relationships.
I was taught Papal invincibility as priests preyed on youth. They forgave others behind confessional screens, required rosaries for penance.
My father, God rest his soul, more a father than them. He didn’t need a rosary, but many of them did.
Explanation: When I was away in college, I received a phone call from my mother. They’d just had a new mattress and box spring set delivered. And the strangest thing, she said. When they went to remove the old box spring, they found a rosary entwined in the bottom of it. Did I have any idea why it was there?
And then I remembered. When I was in Catholic grade school, learning my catechism, I feared my father wouldn’t go to heaven because he didn’t go to church and he wasn’t a Catholic. So I sneaked into my parents’ bedroom, crawled under their bed and tied a rosary to the boxed spring, on the side of the bed my father slept on. Imagine the indoctrination that happened to make me think that and go to that extreme to save him. I was probably in third or fourth grade when I did this. I just couldn’t understand, I suppose, how such a good man as my father, wouldn’t be allowed in heaven.
In these days of Covid-19, when we are tied closer to home, I find more time for reflection. I believe it is an important time to maintain our faith; to believe in the good. Photo taken at dawn, last year in Provincetown on Cape Cod.
yesterday’s questionable tomorrow.
Have faith in the morrows
and shelter on.
Written for day 2 of National Poetry Writing Month and dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. Also Imaginary Garden for Toads‘ prompt for April 2 is to write something appropriate for street poetry….I take that to mean something we could chalk on our sidewalk as a message for others. Image from Pixabay.com.
Her faith burrows into the folds of her being.
Where there is sadness,
there is never despair.
Where there is hurt,
there is never hatred.
Love and hope shine upon her face
as she lives kindly within her days.
Twelve voices soar,
Response to powerful words.
Reach out your hand
And I’ll be flying home.
Twelve voices soar,
Emotions enveloped in yours.
My work is finished
The angel’s command.
Twelve voices soar,
into a new world.
Carry me on . . . I’m flying home.
Twelve voices strong.
we heard your song.
Italicized words in poem are lyrics from Jason Robert Brown’s Flying Home – a song from his musical Songs for a New World. Last night we were privileged to see this show, which is literally a song cycle without any dialogue between performers, sung by 12 students at Phillips Academy at Andover. It was hard to believe these were high school sophomores, juniors and seniors. They literally carried us through a gamut of emotions as they sang (lived) moments of decision by the characters they became. If you’re not familiar with the song, Flying Home, click here and you’ll understand the power of the piece – stick with it to the end. And yes……it was powerful in last night’s Phillips Academy production.
Squint your eyes,
tantamount to willful aperture.
Unsee dissonance, the ugly, the bad.
Visualize instead the good wherever it may be.
Work it. Become it. Traverse only there.
X marks the spot and if you believe, it can be found.
I’m hosting Meet The Bar Thursday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. At MTB, a particular form of poetry becomes the prompt. Today, I’m asking folks to write an Alphabet Sestet! A poem of 6 lines that uses an alphabetical sequence that appears in the first word of each line. Hence, I’ve used the alphabetical sequence S-T-U-V-W-X in my poem. The first word of each line, begins with the corresponding letter of the alphabetical sequence. Line 1 starts with S; line 2 starts with T; line 3 starts with U; etc. Any alphabetical sequence may be used: writer’s choice!
Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time. Come join us. It’s easy as A-B-C, 1-2-3 in the words of the Jackson Five’s wonderful early hit! 🙂 Image from Pixabay.com
That night . . .
my body turned against me
you praying, willing me to live.
My last breath
words unheard by you. I am still here. I hover
in rays of sun
in soft mist beneath grey clouds
in star lit and blackened nights.
My essence ever walks with you.
Savor life, my dearest.
I am content, waiting patiently.
ii. In Absentia
That night . . .
your breath rattled
never to open again.
we celebrated your life
even as emptiness suffocated me.
I redecorated yesterday
all mirrors removed.
My reflection without you
too painful, too alone,
reminder of you
I’m hosting Tuesday Poetics at dVerse today, the virtual pub for poets, asking folks to write a poem that somehow deals with opposites or uses the literary device of antithesis. One can include simple words in opposition happy/sad, inside/outside; or describe one event from two opposite viewpoints. The opposition can happen in one poem; different stanzas; or even two short poems. Folks are free to be creative….as long as they deal with opposites! For a different take on the prompt, a satirical one, go to my second post, Mishmash Succotash.Pub opens at 3 PM Boston time….come join us and write in opposites or just read along!
Eyes closed, gaze within
picture sun and feel its warmth.
Searching deeper . . .
deeper still . . .
seek the ocean’s glistening path.
Breathe in . . .
and now sigh out . . .
bask in rest within your mind.
Permit the balm, accept its calm.
Slowly begin to open . . .
eyes . . . heart. . . soul.
You are a gift within the gift,
God’s new day.
Napowrimo Day 6: Pay particular attention to line breaks, pauses, space. A poem a day until its May. April is national poetry writing month.
Photo is Easter morning’s dawn from our deck in St. George, Bermuda. We return to Boston today.
At times of crisis, injury; imminent danger for a child, loved one or close friend, many of us slip into “bargaining” or pleading mode. Please God, if you let her avoid this, I will . . . ; or Please God, let him make it through this and I will never . . .
This moment was different as I listened to the doctor. He may or may not wake up. If he does, he most likely will not be the same.
I looked at the doctor and demanded, What do you mean, he won’t be the same? His heart stopped for six minutes so his brain . . . I loudly interrupted, NO!
I wouldn’t listen. I didn’t hear the beeping machines or see the tubes. I just stared intently at his face, past the intubation tube. Held his cold limp hand and firmly said, He is here. He will return to us. I know it.
It was a statement of fact for me. A moment of faith.
snow covered cold ground
challenging spring to surface
crocus pushed to bloom
It’s haibun Monday at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets. Today Mish asks us to write about faith. A haibun is two or three succinct paragraphs of prose that must be true, followed by a seasonal haiku. This post also works for Day 2’s prompt for NaPoWriMo where we’re asked to use “voice” in our post.Prose is in the first/personal voice. Haiku is from the third voice, looking on rather than being in.
I’ve written about this topic before…it’s been five years and those days are indelibly imprinted on my psyche. We continue to be thankful for every day.