The Day The Leaves Came Out


The day was still – – – and bright – – and warm – – –
– – – the day the leaves came out . . . . .


Bumblebees hummed incessantly among the trout lilies –
forget-me-nots – – and yellow dandelions – –
sparkling crystal dragonflies seemed suspended
in the still air – – – butterflies had left their cocoons
and were slowly fanning their colored wings – – – –
– – – the day the leaves came out . . . .

Not one by one – – – – but – spontaneously they
seemed to break their casings – – – – and tiny leaves
completely formed hung from all the branches – – – –
– – – – and soon


the woods stood shimmering – – – – a delicate fantasy
– – – – the wind was still
– – – – – the air was warm
a great phenomenon of life took place
– – – the day the leaves came out . . . . .

~ Gwen Frostic (exerpts from her poem)

Photos on Pinterest

Camas Lilies

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Consider the lilies of the field,
the blue banks of camas
opening into acres of sky along the road.
Would the longing to lie down
and be washed by that beauty
abate if you knew their usefulness,
how the natives ground their bulbs
for flour, how the settlers’ hogs
uprooted them, grunting in gleeful
oblivion as the flowers fell?

And you — what of your rushed
and useful life? Imagine setting it all down —
papers, plans, appointments, everything —
leaving only a note: “Gone
to the fields to be lovely. Be back
when I’m through with blooming.”

Even now, unneeded and uneaten,
the camas lilies gaze out above the grass
from their tender blue eyes.
Even in sleep your life will shine.
Make no mistake. Of course
your work will always matter.
Yet Solomon in all his glory
was not arrayed like one of these.

~ Lynn Ungar

Photo on Pinterest


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Stand still. The trees ahead and the bushes beside you
Are not Lost. Wherever you are is called Here,
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger,
Must ask permission to know it and be known.

The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,
I have made this place around you.
If you leave it, you may come back again, saying Here.

No two branches are the same to Raven.
No two trees are the same to Wren.
If what a tree or a bush does is lost on you,
You are surely lost. Stand still. The forest knows
Where you are. You must let it find you.

~ David Wagoner

Photo on Pinterest

The Harvest Of God: Feasting On Your Theophanies

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It was only a small wind
rather gentle, like a breeze.
It blew a strand of hair across my forehead
and I knew that it was God.

I was awakened by a tiny gleam of light
it slipped through my curtain, onto my face.
It drew me to my feet and on to the window
Drawing back the curtains
dawn stepped softly into my room.
I knew that it was God.

In the middle of my loneliness
the phone rang.
A voice I knew so well, said,
“Hello, I love you.”
Love stirred in my soul
I knew that it was God.

Rain fell gently on the thirsty ground.
Slowly, carefully, steadily it came
to an earth parched with waiting.
Through those holy raindrops
I walked, unafraid — without an umbrella.
I knew that it was God.

It was only a little bitterness I thought
but it wouldn’t leave my heart.
It hung around my soul for ages
until a storm came, violent and terrifying.
It shook me to the depths of my being
and blew all the bitterness away.
I knew that it was God.

It was only a Silver Maple
but in the morning’s sunlight
It was filled with heaven.
I stood in a trance
as one touched by angel wings.
I knew that it was God.

O God, I cried,
Endearing One, I love you!
You cannot hide from me.
Between the cracks of daily life
I find you waiting
to be adored.
You slip into my life
like night and day
like stars and sunshine.
I know that you are God.

~ Macrina Wiederkehr

My Ancient Gardener

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Green-thumbed God,
my ancient gardener,
I spread my branches
to treat you to shade
so we can talk.

My relationship to you
has been ambiguous.
I have always shivered
under your pruning knife,
but I have lapped up
your watering.

I was hurt that you
did not protect me
from the destructive winds,
but I trust your accurate eye
to design my future shape.
I rest in your dream of me.

I will reward your quiet murmurings
(encouraging me to grow)
by pushing up another shoot.

Before the cold of winter,
I will throw myself into magnificence
that will take your breath away.
I will be flowing gold,
transparent yellow,
I will be sun behind shifting sun
in every leaf.

Can you hear that I talk to you
through colors?
Are you listening to the love prayers
of my leaves?

~ Ulrich Schaffer

Photos at Pinterest

My Soul Shall Live ~ ~ ~

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“I may not sorrow for I saw the light,
Tho’ I shall walk in valley ways for long,
I still shall hear the echo of the song,—
My life is measured by its one great height.
Joy holds more grace than pain can ever give,
And by my glimpse of joy my soul shall live.”

~ Sara Teasdale

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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

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The Hills Are Alive ~ ~ ~


You are playing your music again
And I run after each golden tone.

Suddenly I ring like a gong struck by God.
Oh, my heart is indestructible whenever You play on it.

Strike me, Beloved, again and again.
Never stop sounding my wild thunder heart.

~ Janine Canan
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A Quiet Moment

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I know this world is far from perfect.
I am not the type to mistake a streetlight for the moon.
I know our wounds are deep as the Atlantic.
But every ocean has a shoreline
and every shoreline has a tide
that is constantly returning
to wake the songbirds in our hands,
to wake the music in our bones,
to place one fearless kiss on the mouth of that new born river
that has to run through the center of our hearts
to find its way home.

~ Andrea Gibson ~

A Thousand Years of Healing

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From whence my hope, I cannot say,
except it grows in the cells of my skin,
in my envelope of mysteries it hums.
In this sheath so akin to the surface of the earth
it whispers. Beneath
the wail and dissonance in the world,
hope’s song grows. Until I know
that with this turning
we put a broken age to rest.
We who are alive at such a cusp
now usher in
one thousand years of healing! Continue reading