Posts Tagged ‘On Being’

Poetry Friday round-up is with Laura Shovan.

Lucretius just presents this marvelous and important idea that what we are made of will make something else, which to me is very important. There is no nothingness — with these little atoms that run around too little for us to see. But, put together, they make something. And that to me is a miracle. Where it came from, I don’t know. But it’s a miracle, and I think it’s enough to keep a person afloat.

Mary Oliver in an interview with Krista Tippet of On Being.

I was listening to On Being with Krista Tippet, an old podcast of an interview with Mary Oliver from 2015. The episode repeated the week of Mary Oliver’s death in January of this year. Listening to Mary Oliver makes me feel I am in the presence of a wise yogi.

The practice of writing poetry, I am learning, is an exercise in mindfulness. To be open to the universe of words and to put them down on a page is a gift. Then there is the renewing of the words as you revise, reorder, read aloud to a writing group, and go at it all again.

This poem came from all this listening and doing the work of the morning.


If we could make of everything
a sacred movement–

Digging in the deep mud
watching the earthworm squirm.

Painting on of pale eyeshadow,
touching my face with gentleness.

The cat is purring a prayer.

Wind chimes are ringing a hymn,

And here I am,
lifting my coffee mug to my lips

Even the cicadas are laughing.

Margaret Simon, draft 2019
Image by Ravi Kant

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Discover. Play. Build.

Ruth Ayres invites us the celebrate each week. Click over to her site Discover. Play. Build. to read more celebrations.

Hope is the thing
I have discovered that I value connections. When we are willing to be vulnerable, we can trust others with our stories. Trusting someone with your story takes courage, but the reward is love. Making connections through story creates a bond, not only with the other but also within yourself and your own self-worth.

On Sunday, I made a connection with words from the Bible. Part of the reading from Romans was this, “suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us.” Romans 5:3-4

I am writing a verse novel with the working title of “Hope is our Song.” Immediately when I read these words, I chose them as my epigraph for the book. I spoke with the young priest after the service about his sermon. His words resonated with me and will connect with anyone who has suffered.

I am unable to give you an answer as to the why of human suffering. I cannot answer the age old question why do bad things happen to good people?However, I see in the Trinity how we get through such suffering- we get through such suffering, we make such suffering meaningful, because of our love for each other.–Seth Walley

Love is communicated through connection, through our shared stories, through our empathy toward one another.

My friend shared her new favorite book, Unfathomable City: A New Orleans Atlas by Rebecca Solnit. I had just that morning been listening to On Being, an interview with Rebecca Solnit.

Again, the word hope pops up and these words from Rebecca Solnit speak to me.

I wrote a book called Hope in the Dark about hope where the — where that darkness was the future, that the present and past are daylight, and the future is night. But in that darkness is a kind of mysterious, erotic, enveloping sense of possibility and communion. Love is made in the dark as often as not. And then to recognize that unknowability as fertile, as rich as the womb rather than the tomb in some sense..

In talking to my friend and making the connection between the Bible verse, her new book, the podcast I was listening to, our conversation was rich with meaning. She advised me to pay attention. The universe is speaking to me. This blog post is my way of taking note and paying attention. I celebrate connections.

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Join the Spiritual Thursday round up at Reading, Teaching, Learning.

Join the Spiritual Thursday round up at Reading, Teaching, Learning.

When you laugh, I’ll laugh with you.
The Servant Song

I drive the highway south to New Orleans fairly often. There is a bridge overpass that is quite faulty. This used to frustrate me because suddenly my car was bumping up and down jarring me out of whatever thought I was having. Once I was driving this road with my friend Cathy. We were making a day trip to New Orleans to shop for wigs and dresses for the upcoming Berry Queen ball. Already we were in the mood for fun. When the bumping started, I exclaimed my usual ugh!, but when I looked over at Cathy, she was laughing and exaggerating the up and down movement. She says with glee, “I love this bridge!”

My attitude changed totally and ever since, I look forward to the bridge. I remember the fun day we had, the laughter in Cathy’s voice, and the memory of shared joy.

Laughter is like that. Laughter can change a moment of fear and frustration into one of joy and delight. I believe God is all about transforming moments into joy.

Sunset reflection

Sunset reflection

Today I am at the lake to celebrate my mother’s birthday. My sister and her children are here. There will be lots of talking and sharing and laughing.

On my way here, I listened to a podcast called On Being. The guest was Sister Simone Campbell. You can listen to it here. One of the writing exercises I like to do is turn my notes into a poem. Here is a found poem from Sister Simone.

Walk willing.
Open hands
for the treasure
to hold, not grasp,
willing to share.
Open heart
ready to be broken
by his story,
forever changed.
Make me one part
of the one body
that Paul speaks of.
Wake me up
to do the thing
I am able to do.

One of my favorite folk hymns is The Servant Song. This song expresses the community of Christ and helps me to remember how to be fully present for others on this spiritual journey.

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