Hope 2

Carl Spitzweg – Schoolchildren in the Woodland

All That is Gold Does Not Glitter

All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.
J.R.R. Tolkien

All Woods Must Fail

O! Wanderers in the shadowed land
Despair not! For though dark they stand,
All woods there be must end at last,
And see the open sun go past:
The setting sun, the rising sun,
The day’s end, or the day begun.
For east or west all woods must fail.
J. R. R. Tolkien

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Easter Poetry

Lent

Lent is a tree without blossom, without leaf,
Better than blackthorn in its winter sleep,
All unadorned. Unlike Christmas which decrees
The setting-up, the dressing-up of trees.

Lent is a taking down, a stripping bare,
A starkness after all has been withdrawn
Of surplus and superfluous,
Leaving no hiding place, only emptiness
Between black branches, a most precious space
Before the leaf, before the time of flowers;
Lest we should see only the leaf, the flower,
Lest we should miss the stars.
Jean M.Watt

Sightseers into Pilgrims

I used to think –
loving life so greatly –
that to die would be
like leaving a party
before the end.

Now I know that the party
is really happening
somewhere else;
that the light and the music –
escaping in snatches
to make the pulse beat
and the tempo quicken –
come from a long way away.

And I know too
that when I get there
the music will never end.
Evangeline Paterson

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Solitude

Ships that pass in the night, and speak each other in passing.
Only a signal shown and a distant voice in the darkness:
So on the ocean of life, we pass and speak one another.
Only a look and a voice, then darkness again and a silence.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Many people suffer from the fear of finding oneself alone,
and so they don’t find themselves at all.
Rollo May

We live, in fact, in a world starved for solitude, silence, and private:
and therefore starved for meditation and true friendship.
C.S. Lewis

What a commentary on civilization,
when being alone is being suspect;
when one has to apologize for it, make excuses,
hide the fact that one practices it –
like a secret vice.
Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Each of us is alone in the world.
It takes great courage to meet the full force of your aloneness.
When you face your aloneness, something begins to happen.
Gradually, the sense of bleakness changes into a sense of true belonging.
This is a slow and open-ended transition
but it is utterly vital in order
to come into rhythm with your own individuality.
John O’Donohue

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Slow Dance

Dennis Binda   – Japanese Cranes

Ever followed a butterfly’s erratic flight,
or gazed at the sun fading into the night?

You better slow down, don’t dance so fast,
time is short, the music won’t last.

Do you run through each day on the fly,
when you ask “How are you?”, do you hear the reply?
When the day is done, do you lie in your bed,
with the next hundred chores running through your head?

You better slow down, don’t dance so fast,
time is short, the music won’t last.

Ever told your child, we’ll do it tomorrow,
and in your haste, not see his sorrow?
Ever lost touch, let a friendship die,
’cause you never had time to call and say hi?

You better slow down, don’t dance so fast,
time is short, the music won’t last.

When you run so fast to get somewhere,
you miss half the fun of getting there.
When you worry and hurry through your day,
it’s like an unopened gift thrown away.

Life isn’t a race, so take it slower,
hear the music before your song is over.

David L.Weatherford

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There are Men Too Gentle to Live Among Wolves

There are men too gentle to live among wolves
Who prey upon them with IBM eyes
And sell their hearts and guts for martinis at noon.
There are men too gentle for a savage world
Who dream instead of snow and children and Halloween
And wonder if the leaves will change their color soon.

There are men too gentle to live among wolves
Who anoint them for burial with greedy claws
And murder then for a merchant’s profit and gain.
There are men too gentle for a corporate world
Who dream instead of candied apples and ferris wheels
And pause to hear the distant whistle of a train.

There are men too gentle to live among wolves.
Who devour them with eager appetite and search
For other men to prey upon and suck their childhood dry.
There are men too gentle for an accountant’s world
Who dream instead of Easter eggs and fragrant grass
And search for beauty in the mystery of the sky.

There are men too gentle to live among wolves
Who toss them like a lost and wounded dove.
Such gentle men are lonely in a merchant’s world.
Unless they have a gentle one to love.

James Kavanaugh

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Ducks

Jean Baptiste Oudry – Ducks Resting in Sunshine, 1753

When God had finished the stars and whirl of coloured suns
He turned His mind from big things to fashion little ones;
Beautiful tiny things (like daisies) He made them, and then
He made the comical ones in case the minds of men
Should stiffen and become
Dull, humourless and glum,
And so forgetful of their Maker be
As to take even themselves – quite seriously.

Caterpillars and cats are lively and excellent puns:
All God’s jokes are good – even the practical ones!
And as for the duck, I think God must have smiled a bit
Seeing those bright eyes blink on the day He fashioned it.
And He’s probably laughing still at the sound
that came out of its bill!

F.W.Harvey

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Fairy Tales

Aimee Stewart – Treasure Hunt

Child of the pure, unclouded brow
And dreaming eyes of wonder!
Though time be fleet and I and thou
Are half a life asunder,
Thy loving smile will surely hail
The love-gift of a fairy tale.
Lewis Carroll

When the first baby laughed for the first time,
its laugh broke into a thousand pieces,
and they all went skipping about,
and that was the beginning of fairies.
And now when every new baby is born its first laugh becomes a fairy.
So there ought to be one fairy for every boy or girl.
James M. Barrie – Peter Pan.

Fairy Tales are more than true;
not because they tell us that dragons exist,
but because they tell us
that dragons can be beaten.
G. K. Chesterton

If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales.
If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.
Albert Einstein

Some day you will be old enough to start reading fairy tales again.
C. S. Lewis

♥♥♥

The Blessing of Autumn

Van Gogh – Landscape with House and Ploughman 1889

As autumn flames across park and field
as smoke curls from ditch and garden,
as birds sing their farewell song,
as frost begins to touch the ground
and our hearts are warmed
by the scent, sound and touch of it;
now is the time to throw away
the heavy stones of anger, regret and fear,
which harden our hearts.
Now is the time to gather stones of praise
to build a cairn
of thankfulness to our God
for all the blessings of our autumn life.

Kate Mcllhagga

…and thinking how the first scent of autumn
is like coming across a lost album
of childhood photographs.
Jonathan Hull

Six o’clock feeling

Gauguin – Landscape with Dog 1903

You ever feel
dat 6 o’clock feeling
6 o’clock shadow falling
wrapping you up
mekkin you stop
and tink
bout all dese tings
God doin
6 o’clock bee calling
all dem tree
tekking strange, strange shape
and stan up
sharp! sharp! gainst dat sky
you know dem 6 o’clock colour
pink an orange an blue an purple an black
dat 6 o’clock feeling
mekkin you feel like touchin
mekkin you feel so small
you could cry
or fall down pun your knee
and thank God
you could still
see de 6 o’clock sky
Kamal Singh

If I can put one touch of rosy sunset
into the life of any man or woman,
I shall feel that I have worked with God.
G.K.Chesterson

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