there’s little reason to do other than what we have always done
wake early, regard the morning sun
sing with the earliest bird
have a hot mug of tea and read verse to one another
resting easy in the arms of the old chair
the world exhales, relieved of all our hurry
and fuming about every minute
she recalls the time when sun and moon
were enough to light the path
and stars were there for the naming
so gather ye rosebuds and we will all go a-Maying
round and round the mulberry bush
resting well in the arms of the good green earth
and easing our hearts with the psalms of bees
So much changed in so little time,
in this age of quarantine.
Things we never would have guessed.
Did you see that seismologists say
the earth’s crust has hushed a bit?
Her skin no longer inflamed by cars
and buses and trains and billions
of feet walking and dancing
and running and loping and
skipping across her back.
She is quieter.
You can hear the birds sing.
It has been an unusual Lent
to say the least
The devotional has been an old one I came across
of Henri Nouwen’s from Mt Vernon
on the Prodigal Son
I am broken open
by this old story, this parable of a wayward child
and his truculent brother and loving father
I think of his mother and her fear for her younger son
and the weariness of that sad fear.
The relief and busy-ness of killing
the fabled fatted calf for a celebration and readying for guests,
trying to assuage her eldest sons pouts and consternation,
when all she wants to do is sit quietly
in her chair and be happy her son is home.
And I wonder if those thirty six righteous men are working
their asses off researching the vaccine to save humanity.
Or if they are wandering from place to stay-in-place,
just trying to find a soft chair to sit in
and a cold glass of water to drink.
Its all that ‘second loneliness’ that broke my chest open.
All that second loneliness for the world in all its pain and beauty
All that second loneliness in isolation
All this second loneliness, Lent 2020
Shall we go back to the basics
of being human,
you and I.
First: shelter, food, fire.
Next comes touch and smell,
imprint of our human-ness.
We fold our skin over our beloveds,
a cloud of prayer above our heads,
leaning into each other, though far apart.
We are kin, skin to skin,
though far apart.