Posts Tagged ‘blessing’

What I Can Offer

for S & J

I want to give you something
necessary as rain and lasting as honey,
something useful as a spoon,
something helpful as wheels.

Sometimes it feels so inadequate
to offer you a poem, a prayer,
the small light of a candle,
a hammock woven only of blessings.

Still, as you meet these difficult hours
I wish you the peace of the amber field,
wish you the rose quartz of dawn.

Because it’s what I can do, I offer you poems,
prayers, the small flame of a candle, and
a hammock of blessings woven with dark, with light.

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So Alive

After a late summer rain,
when the low sun shines
through the still-dripping world,
I walk in the garden and slip my hands
into the lettuce rows,
easily pulling up small green heads,
the leaves not yet bitter and tough.
Oh, the beauty of things in their prime.
Soon enough, the snow will be here,
the garden a drift of white.
No way to preserve this green for winter,
so I take it into me, dirt and all,
stuffing the leaves into my mouth.
I take in the green and the diamonding dew,
take in the golden light,
take in the sound of the river
and the growing shadows.
There are moments I understand
what blessing is. In this moment,
it looks exactly like what is.

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Blessings, Blessings

Believing it matters,
today I bless all that seems unable to grow.
I bless the stems of larkspur
broken in yesterday’s storm.
I bless the broken. Bless those in pain.
Bless all who feel as if they are drowning
in the ache of aloneness and betrayal.
I have felt the wide blessing of sky,
cold blessing of rain, green blessing of field,
I have felt the dark, sharp blessing of loss.
How it’s changed me.  
For all I cannot fix, I bless it.
For all I cannot hold, cannot heal, cannot mend,
blessings, blessings, impossible blessings,
tender blessings, blessings
mighty as wildfire,
blessings as gentle
as tears.

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For Ivar

Today as we gently
spread mountain dirt
on your ashes
I think of
that snow blown day
three years ago
when we
at two below
were laughing
at how cold
we were and
how sticky
our skis.
It amazes me
how out of
comes blessing.
To this day
your smile—
and wide as the mesa
we stood on—
still warms me,
your real smile
the only part
of that long cold race
I remember.

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I save every
rubber band—
thick purple ones
from broccoli,
asparagus, leeks,
and the thin blue ones
used to keep berries
from spilling.
I could never throw away
a rubber band—
stretchy bonuses
thrown in for free.
Perhaps it’s strange
to call them blessings—
but I thrill in side benefits.
Like a talented new friend
hardwired for forgiveness.
Like the swooping choreography
of swallows that helps them
to eat biting flies.
Like how red wine is rich
with antioxidants.
Like a newspaper
filled with bad news,
but delivered with a useful,
flexible, rubber band.

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Small Gratitudes




It was one of those days when the alarm

didn’t go off, and we woke anyway

to a world covered in snow, and


by noon the sky was blue. And I drove

right through the construction zone

without being stopped by a flagger.


The tomato for breakfast was ripe

and sharp and sweet. And the tea

was strong and black. The radio


played only songs I wanted to sing.

My car started. I had no flat tires.

I never felt sick. Never fell. More blessings,


it turns out, than a woman can count, though

I try to count them all. And the more

I remember—a good friend called, all


ten fingers are intact, my eyes still

see across the room—yes,

the more blessings I consider, the more


my joy grows until I am dumbfounded,

gobsmacked by gratitude that’s exactly

the size of the known universe, amazed by


how perfectly it fits—as if I were made for this—

right inside my skin.


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Sometimes gratitude rises in us

like snowmelt—as if some great cold

has met with stubborn warmth

and now the whole world

roars with the transformation.


And sometimes gratitude

touches us more like moonlight,

we can’t truly feel it, but we know

it is there, our being

no longer intimidated by the dark.



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Beyond Wishing




And when there is fear,

then let us be flowers

unashamed of our blooming,

and let us be rivers undammed.

And when there is loss,

then let us be leaves that surrender to death

and give even more in life.

And when there is ache,

let’s unfold like dawn in layers

and layers of ripening pink,

let’s be bells

that ring only love.

And when there is sorrow,

let us be dark wings

that gather the light,

and let us be the light.

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after William Stafford

When the leaves are about to yellow and fall

ask me then how I tried to hold on to what was green,

how I thought perhaps I was different,

how everything I thought I knew about gold

turned brittle and brown. Ask me what it was like

to fall then. Sometimes the world becomes invisible

and we know ourselves as the world. Sometimes

the only words that can find our lips are thank you,

though the gifts look nothing like anything

we ever thought we wanted.

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Very, Very Quietly


I did not choose
awe today, but the big
pink sky chose me
and steeped me
in fantastic joy—
a drenching of miracle,
an overdose of amazement,
a wild indulgence of bliss—
oh such pink! layers
of rose and deeper rose,
and I did not earn it,
did not first prove my worthiness,
did not beg nor kneel nor fast
nor renounce my name
nor pull the strings
of the lyre nor sing,
all I had to do
was step outside
out of my own way
and open my eyes
and let myself
be gifted.

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