I Take To Myself

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I take to myself
my broken self:
my guilt, my peace,
my folly and joy,
my sickness, my health,
in laughter and agony,
hating and loving,
my fear and my birthing –
and I am made whole.

I take to myself
you, my neighbor,
cupping your life
within my hands:
your broken self
pure gift to me;
not burden, gift,
as mine to you –
and I am made whole.

I take to myself
you, broken Earth;
stripped and abused,
paved over and poisoned,
you mother so freely,
abundant in grace:
clasp in your mercy,
surprise into tears –
and I am made whole.

I take to myself
your broken self,
my dear, near God;
broken for broken,
for lost and for spent.
As fragmented love
and nectar of life,
you come, gentle God –
and I am made whole.

~ Bill Johnston

Photo at: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/543668986243914428/

Ode To Our Dying Mother

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Ode To Our Dying Mother

Mostly I find the tempest rages from within
when I see violence to the heart of wounded souls.

No longer able to contain the power of love,
I must speak out as God Love speaks through me.

There is no honor in standing by
to watch a mortal suffer pain and woe.

There is no comfort to “do nothing” –
but great joy comes with the act.

Summon courage now to be
the universal healer that you are.

Stand up for testimony to
the dying of our earth.

Without your voice, She is not heard,
Her sorrow vanishes away.

We are the children of a Mother
who has shed Her blood for you.

Upon Her desperation
we must offer tender care

To bless each flower
as She fades away.

~ Anna Lin
April 2/ 2014


I have been reluctant to post this lest it sound like hopelessness for a world that is in crisis. It is true that I/we witness extinction* on a daily basis. And this poem honors that grief and loss and the need to lament. But there are also signs of hope springing up every day, as witnessed by the People’s Climate March last weekend.

Change is happening; and our despair for our Mother Earth may be the driving force that leads us forward to push for a brighter, healthier future.

May we fully love our Mother Earth and care for all people who live here now and in the coming days.
*Thank you to Megan Hollingsworth for her inspiring work at ExtinctionWitness.org


Mother Earth ~ Our Grandmother

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Today we surround ourselves with the Green Robe of the Mother Earth, our Grandmother. She is a greening thing, a Flowering Tree that sends up her shoots to shade and delight, to nurture and rest you. She is a stream of running water, a cup to drink, a cleansing bath to restore the body, a benediction to renew each moment.

Let her winds wrap you in gentle, powerful blankets. Let her voice soothe your thoughts and fears, the things of long ago that wound you still. Let her words and sounds comfort you until you hear only the voice of her prayer; the wind, the streams, the flowing rivers, the pounding sea, the rains and thunder, the song of birds, the cry of wolves, the whistle of hawk and eagle, the flutter of tiny moths, the droning ones, the silence.

Today, as you walk in her forest, her generous carpets of mulch and leaf, stone and clay, her beds of cedar and moss, remember to walk there in soft, in reverent, in mindful dance. Greet everything around you — and speak to the earth you touch.

Breathe deeply and slowly, letting all that harms you go.
Receive her gifts. Let the Holy Fire come up and bless you.
Step softly, and walk as if you had no place to go.

~  adapted from Djohariah Toor,  Songs from the Mountain