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Beauty

prairiechick

prairiechick

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I wrote this poem back in summer, and thought I'd share it with you.

Beauty

Beauty, Beauty is all lost to me;
vanished, it has abandoned me
in a colorless world, a dim, grey world
where soft winds no longer whisper
in the delicate aspen,
the sun no longer illuminates
their slender, white frame;
a world in which the joy of
no flower penetrates my heart;
a world in which elms are ordinary-
they no longer hold the sensual beauty
of graceful branches dancing, dancing,
dancing before a clear blue sky by day,
and by night soft lamplight playing on their limbs.

Beauty, Beauty is all lost to me.
The Holy Liturgy in all its
ancient Truth and Beauty no longer
holds me in rapt attention and awe
at the wonder of our God.
The loveliness of ancient form,
the Baptismal Font,
the archways and windows
reaching to the center point,
the alter laid with Cross and Bread and Wine,
no longer draw me into the mystery,
the sacred place, the Holy of Holies,
Communion with our God,
and this is greatest grief to me.

Copyright Fiona 2010
 
tiltawhirl

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wow.

SG, I don't know how familiar you are with Mother Theresa (Saint Theresa)...but she is one of my heroines. Did you know that she suffered a crisis of faith midway into her ministry and functioned the rest of her life without that assurance that had been her constant companion and impetus to establish her sacred work?

This poem very much reminded me of that.
 
prairiechick

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Hi Tiltawhirl, yes, I know about her crisis of faith. I read about it in Time Magazine several years ago. You just reminded me that I want to read the book about that. There have been times when the knowledge of her struggle have given me courage to keep going. Thank you for reminding me of her.
 
tiltawhirl

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I saw a very good biography of her on video. She didn't abandon her faith by any measure, and perhaps that is part of what makes her so extraordinary! It was termed "the dark night of the soul" by St. John, I believe. So it was her felt experience that changed. Her life of faith did not waiver.
Earlier in her mission she felt closely the presence of Christ, His guidance and His comfort. These are the things she lost touch with..but never the reality of it and what it asked of her.
 
prairiechick

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St. John of the Cross, yes. I really do identify with those spiritual writers who experienced so much darkness. It makes me feel less alone. I guess I am just one of those people who has to wrestle with God. I don't see my poem as giving up on God or faith. It's just something that had to be written in order for me to live my journey with honesty. In the weeks and months after I wrote that poem I realized, and told myself, that I needed to recognize one beautiful thing a day. I didn't have to feel moved by it, I just had to notice. And then I started going down to a quiet place by the river to sit on a rock and just watch the river. I did that as long as the weather was warm enough, and it was such a healing thing to just let my thoughts flow down the river. Sometimes I would sit for over an hour.

You have encouraged me more than words can express today, Tiltawhirl. Thank you.
 
tiltawhirl

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oh, I never got the impression that you had given up your faith...your poem just so reminded me of the dark night of the soul of those great Christians. I think you put into poetry what Mother Theresa felt! That is incredibly beautiful.
But, as you have explained more...yes, I have seen you paint the beauty of nature here with words. The dawn sunrise, the crisp air on your walks..I did not know that you disciplined those things to connect with God.

I had a period of time where I struggled with faith and it was so very very difficult. I was in trying circumstances and I saw my best and only avenue of resolution to be one of faith.
I have gotten lax in that respect these days.
You give me things to think about.
So much is beyond my understanding that I have been studying great people like Ghandi and the Dalai Lama and Mother Theresa as inspiration.
I used to have a book of sayings by the Dessert Fathers that I really cherished.

I hope you are having a good night tonight, SG.
 
prairiechick

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That is a huge compliment to me. You know, it's kind of odd in a way. I started going to an Anglican church off and on the summer I graduated from university. I was working lots of Sundays, though, so didn't go often. But after my cousin was murdered in Vancouver in July 2004, that's when I started going on a more regular basis, and there was just something about the liturgy that held me, because it was the one constant thing in my life when I felt my life was falling apart. That was a horrible time for me, but that priest, J, led a grief support group in the fall after my cousin's death. As horrible a time as it was, I don't recall having it all out with God like I've been doing lately. I read a book called "Centering Prayer and Inner Awakening," by Cynthia Bourgealt, and found it a transformational book.
 
A.m.b.e.r

A.m.b.e.r

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Like i said in the previous post, the imagery in this poem just makes the whole thing beautiful . well done its a lovely piece. x
 
tiltawhirl

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SG, I recently grabbed a novel when I was at the library and just cruising for some escapist mysteries and I picked one up titled "The Shack" by William someone. It turned out that it was a Christian novel and while I would not call it sophisticated by any measure I found it had some interesting ideas to it. It deals with the parent of a child who was murdered and some theology mixed in. It gave me some food for thought and possibly comfort because of the death of my son. It isn't of the caliber of the classic writings we have referred to but I think you might really like it and find some meaning in your own struggles from it. Just a suggestion.
 
prairiechick

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Hi Tiltawhirl, yes, I have read that book, a few years ago. It was definitely an interesting read, although very difficult too. Thanks for thinking of me.
 
tiltawhirl

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yes, it gave me some ideas to toss around concerning my loss and the questions and anger and anguish that go with it. But the whole subject of the loss is rather painful and not a place I want to dwell on in my head now that I have some healing from it.
I had never heard of it, really just picked it out at complete random from the stacks of fiction. Later when I mentioned it others told me that they had heard of it.

Was yesterday a significantly easier Sunday evening for you in comparison to the last few?
 
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