This week my childhood friend and his wife lost their middle-age son to cancer. I can’t imagine what it would be like to lose a child. As I share in their sorrow, I wanted to share this poem that I have posted a few times before. It expresses my understanding of what it is like to pass on from this life to the next.
A little girl saw a long wooden ladder, with wheels as tall as she was, sitting inside the Cathedral door. Seeing the priest greeting Sunday parishioners nearby, she reached over tugging on the arm of his robe.
Her mother quickly pulled her away and said, “Don’t bother the priest while he is greeting people!”
The priest overhearing what was happening said, “It is quite alright. What would you like to know young lady.”
“Is that the stairway to heaven?” she asked.
“No child, Heaven is much farther away than this ladder could reach. This one is for changing our lightbulbs.”
“Well, where is God?” asked the little girl.
“Oh, Only mouths are we, who sings the distant heart which safely exists in the center of all things? God is the center of all that exists, both near and far.”
“And, thank you for asking.”
Today at d’Verse, Sanaa introduced a Prosery prompt. It requires a short prose piece, only 144 words, that includes a line from a poem that she has chosen. The line is“Only mouths are we. Who sings the distant heart which safely exists in the center of all things? – from Rainer Maria Rilke, “Heartbeat.”
Some folks have a hard time believing the Easter story. The resurrection of Jesus found in the gospels gives the account from different writer’s perspectives. You might think that creates contradictions and therefore cannot be true. Others say that since there is no historical record of these happenings, other than the Biblical account, that it is just Christian mythology.
I believe getting lost in the details causes one to lose focus and misses the real message in the Easter story. Easter is about God’s love for all of us, and the belief that he would do what ever it takes to show us that love. Jesus shows us that there is a way to move beyond our self-centered way of thinking to a renewing of the mind… a rebirth of Spirit if you will. Our connection to God is not to some far off being, but rather found in His image and Spirit that dwells within our souls. It is through Jesus’ life and teachings that we can see the Father and find that personal connection to the Living God.
In the Christian faith we celebrate Good Friday, remembering the suffering and death of Christ on the Cross at Calvary. But it is not the dark night of the soul that draws us to God’s Love and Grace. It is the joy of Easter and the Light of the Resurrection that gives us hope. The Light at the end of the dark tunnel is Jesus!
I read a post from a blogger friend, Astrid, Life’s Adventure and Disability | Astrid’s Words , this morning. It inspired the opening line to this poem. The application to our spiritual life seemed to fit in so well, so I wrote this poem. Click on her link to read her poem.
I wrote this a few years ago for the d’Verse Poets Pub. I thought it would be good to reflect on as we exit 2020 and enter 2021. We have lost a multitude of people this year to Covid-19. Death has a way of bringing things into focus. It brings us face to face with our own mortality. The thoughts in this poem reflect on spirit within each of us.
Where dwells the spirit before life begins
Waiting to entwine with genes at man’s whims
Does it float in space riding red stardust
Or in ocean waves where the raindrops swim
Where dwells the spirit when I took my first
Breath of life // of heart and lungs merged thirst