Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Anonymous as cherubs
Over the crib of God,
White seeds are floating
Out of my burst pod.
What power had I
Before I learned to yield?
Shatter me, great wind:
I shall possess the field.
From "Two Voices in a Meadow"by Richard Wilbur1
Richard Wilbur combines simplicity with fluency to produce some of the most profound poetry in the English language. This voice (the other one is a stone) reminds us of the power of yielding our will to the greater will. Wilbur doesn't capitalize great wind, but I can't help reading it that way: Shatter me, Great Wind. It is in the choir with Donne's Batter my heart, three-person'd God. The choir master is: My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness. 2 Cor 12:9.
Let us pray for the strength to be weak. Shatter me, Great Wind.
Here's Donne's great Holy Sonnet XIV:
Batter my heart, three-person'd God ; for you
As yet but knock ; breathe, shine, and seek to mend ;
That I may rise, and stand, o'erthrow me, and bend
Your force, to break, blow, burn, and make me new.
I, like an usurp'd town, to another due,
Labour to admit you, but O, to no end.
Reason, your viceroy in me, me should defend,
But is captived, and proves weak or untrue.
Yet dearly I love you, and would be loved fain,
But am betroth'd unto your enemy ;
Divorce me, untie, or break that knot again,
Take me to you, imprison me, for I,
Except you enthrall me, never shall be free,
Nor ever chaste, except you ravish me. 2
1 Wilbur, Richard, Collected Poems 1943-2004, New York, Harcourt, Inc. 2004, 257
2 Donne, John. Poems of John Donne. vol I. E. K. Chambers, ed.London: Lawrence & Bullen, 1896. 165.
Saturday, September 25, 2010
Monday, September 20, 2010
Sunday, September 19, 2010
... having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end. (ch13, v1)
20."I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word;21."that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me.22."And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one:23."I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.”
Which returns me to the pope's visit to Britain. The Eucharist is certainly the premier sign of the unity Jesus entreated for that night, but it is not the only sign. The supremacy of Peter and his successors is another. He is the emblem of the very authority Jesus entrusted to the apostles that night, the Magisterium of the Church.
Saturday, September 11, 2010
I have labored to think of something worthy of the occasion. Angry denunciations would come so easily. It is just too sad. In such circumstances, not knowing what to do, I throw myself on the Lord and pray for mercy. I said the Office for the Dead this morning.
Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.