Planting day

I planted my garden today. I’m actually a terrible gardener, and have always felt like a bit of a fake. Thankfully, plants are stubborn things, and resist even my ignorance and neglect. 

Ivy (she’s four) was helping plant peas. She took her time to space them out in the shallow trench we had dug along the trellis fence. One pea at a time, out of the pink plastic cup she held in her hands. She thought we were done after we laid them in the dirt, still smiling up at the sun. 

“We have to cover them up now.” I said. 

“Why?” she asked, eyes wide. “Plants need sun!” This much she knows already. 

“Plants need sun,” I said, “but seeds need dark.” I almost cried right there, smoothing the soil over the crooked row. 

“Why?” A four year old’s curiosity is thirsty as a hot summer day. 

I stop patting the ground and look up. The blue sky is silent. “Because life begins in the dark. I guess it needs to hide first.” 

“Oh!” she says, and dances away, peas almost spilling out of that little pink cup. It is enough for her, at least for today. 

In a tree overhead, an unseen robin breaks madly into song. 

~ Lindsey Gallant

S.D.G.

Listening.

When I don’t even know my full place in the problem

I hold a space for quiet, humbled listening.

I tune my ears to the persecuted poor in spirit

and hear the cries of the kingdom of heaven.

I hold a space for lament. 

There among the bruised and beat down

is one who kneels to breathe peace

even as he overturns the tables of privileged profiteers. 

Can we look through his tears

and see the painful truths of our whitewashed sepulchres?

The Birchwood Blessing

I bless you with the breathing of the trees
and the silence of your soul

I bless you with the renewal of many waters
and the rolling grace of tides

I bless you with moonsong
revealing your heart’s true longing

I bless you with sober eyes 
to drink the visions of transfiguration 

I bless you with hitchhiking prophets
and feet as swift as chariots

I bless you with disappearance 
that leads to new horizons 

I bless you with the break of day
furnace of the sun
melting all your misdrawn arrows into golden rivers
that run to the forgiving sea

I bless you with this parting peace
all that is whole and rejoicing 

~LG

S.D.G.

Morning

I will never tire 
of sunrise glancing off the river’s ripples 
Or how you are still with me when I wake 

I will never tire of your breakfast fire 
Hot coals for my hunger 
And fish that leapt into your hands when you walked by 

This remembrance more real than all my chronos moments
Your breath still quickening my lungs
As you sing matins over me
Strum your peace into my river

~LG

S.D.G.

It’s Friday. Period.

This is for the people who need to embrace the tears of Good Friday.

“It’s Friday, but Sunday’s coming,” they say. And I can understand the sentiment. It’s hard to live entirely without hope, even for one day. It’s a true statement, but there are other, more broken truths that may need to rise to the surface. 

The house is shaking in the wind, and I wonder if the earth itself remembers. Questions surface with the tears, and I am not ready to brush them away. 

*

Can we not just sit with this grief for one day?

Can we not just feel the weight of the world, the weight of our betrayal, the weight of our whitewashed hypocrisy? 

Can we not just experience the crushing, and our pain, and our part in it?

Can we not just sit and weep with each other, weep for all the deaths we cannot reverse, soak our shoulders in shared lament? 

Can we not just acknowledge our blindness, our stubbornness, our failure to love, our failure to prevent our worst nightmares from coming true?

Can we not just stop in stunned silence and acknowledge the paralysis of our isolation? 

Can we not just mourn the extinguishing of light, wilt beneath the darkened sun, and realize the depths of our God-forsaken despair?

Can we not just pause and remember what the world is like when Jesus is not with us? 

When we push the way of love aside?
When we pound the truth into an iron prison?
When we pierce the life-giver of the world right into the grave? 

This is Friday. 

This is us, without him. 

*

And there is comfort, yes, not from what is yet to come, but what is in this moment true:

Surely, he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows. 

*

~LG

S.D.G.