Monday, September 7, 2015


Recently, as I was going through my emails, I came upon one from Writer's Digest, which I was assuming was another of my many rejection notices.  Somehow, they don't seem as daunting when they come in by email, as when it's an envelope in the mail, and I can often tell by feeling whether it's a thin rejection notice, or a slightly thicker letter saying they have accepted my poem(s).  But instead, this email was the bearer of the welcome news that the poem I had submitted to their annual writing contest had received an honorable mention.  This didn't quite lead to my doing a touchdown dance, but I felt appreciated.  In addition, the poem had been sparked by a comment a friend had made in an email to me, and I let her know that she had been the muse who inspired my poem.

When I was praying about the incident that provided the background for the poem, I remembered how our son, who was two at the time, had insisted on climbing the path at Muir Woods for several miles, and how people who passed us commented on his persistence.  And how we then had to carry him all the way back down!  However, despite making this extended hike with all our six children, my predominant memory was of the silence and awe that the huge trees of Muir Woods impressed upon me.  When I reflected on that vast green chapel, in the tiny Blessed Sacrament chapel in our home parish, I was overwhelmed with the realization that God is present in every moment, from the most mundane, to the most magnificent, and that if I open my eyes and ears more often, I can experience his presence rather than rush blind and deaf through my life.  I can hear

Heartbeats like pebbles
on the upward trail
diminuendo in intensity
of space sprung
from one whose works
and Word are hung
beyond time veiled 
in a runic twig or bound
in veined systems of leaves:
green hope fragile

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