Monday, December 28, 2015

An Exquisite Night

It's a wonderful night. Snow began falling imperceptibly hours ago. I thought it was over, but the mounds of white blanketing the hoods of cars grew and grew.

My iPhone played a 2006 concert of Pink Martini in Portland. As it neared the end: the brass and percussion played out their crescendo. Intoxicating. You felt as if you were--nearly there.

I've my son to thank for this Dec 28 reverie: he has gifted two, rocking tickets to hear Pink Martini live, in concert at Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis, April 29, 2016. I may live in bliss until then and thereafter.

Unexpectedly, I put Donald Trump on mute and had the "peace which passeth understanding," in the words of T.S. Eliot.

Then as if to register these very words in print: I heard strains of Sammy Davis Jr.'s  "What kind of Fool Am I?" playing in my head for not having done this sooner. The only answer I can think of is I've been too Catholic to think of it. Perhaps recovery is in play!

Yet in the midst of buying groceries based on a 6-10" snow forecast, once home I looked up:

Why, Why, had the world lost the remarkable Angeles Arrien last year at only 73 years of age? Yet even learning she died suddenly from walking pneumonia, doesn't blunt my inner sadness at losing a woman I so admire!

Angeles Arrien was an anthropologist, author, educator and magical weaver of bridges tying psychology, comparative religions, cultural anthropology and indigenous wisdoms together.

I hope she will forgive me for quoting a poem in her brilliant The Four-Fold Way -  Walking the Paths of the Warrior, Teacher, Healer and Visionary.

It carries my heart's cry over her loss, yet my awe of all the books of hers I possess.
In yes, this exquisite night, I love you, Angeles Arrien.

each of us carries
in our chest
a song
so old
we don't know
if we learned it

some night
between the murmurs
of fallen kisses

our lips
surprise us
when we utter

this song
that is singing
and crying at once

 ---Francisco X Alarcon, Body in Flames

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

For You and Your Family: Cradling Christmas

A Tree Upside Down

Cradle yourself this Christmas
More than any other time in your life;
Soften your days with lit candles and love;
Let embraces come from where they will; 
Allow the tears to flow--for how can they not?
Hang on to every Cherished Good;
Do you know, can you even begin to imagine
Or possibly remember, the million moments
Love was exchanged by the gifts
Of your hands, heart and soul?
All the love you gave! The Love
Received! Let the myriad moments
Cradle this Christmas;
And as the months
And years go by
More, more
Will be 

Written Dec. 5, 1998
By Connie Nelson Ahlberg - All Rights Reserved

Taking Christmas As It Comes

Taking Christmas As It Comes

You have to take your Christmas as it comes--
Even if you've had losses.
In letting go you can embrace:
Your friends, Your angels;
Your family, Your tree,

For the New Year comes
in time for healing:
and wisdom the gifts of hard times.

©1995 Connie Nelson Ahlberg

Sunday, November 22, 2015

And May All the Heavens Bless

Freedom From Want
Norman Rockwell

If you don't have a turkey too often,
It's pretty nice on that Thursday
late in November

To bow your head
While Mom rests her legs,
And thank for the little things,
Like the carving knife,
And the big things,
Like each other.

©Connie Nelson Ahlberg 1996

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Pray, Who Is Missing?

A Nun Ironing Cardinals Vestments
Vatican 1967 - Eve Arnold 
Magnum Photos @Pinterest

The roll of men in the Catholic Church is so broad, so inclusive of them, of patriarchy, that it seems those in power are unable to see the half of us that are missing. 

I'll never forget Pope John Paul II's funeral. By the time all the Cardinals paraded out, esteemed priests, deacons, and altar men or boys, the view was so overwhelmingly male (draped in red and white) that it was stunning. The scene was a sea of red matching the slippers the departed Pope wore on his feet.

I took notes on the first Mass said while the Pope was in the United States. We had a female soloist, one woman reading a responsorial psalm, a choir with women--but not on the altar. 

Even the beloved Virgin Mary was off to the side. The image of the nun above is such a striking pose which depicted the times--but for women, the crux has not changed. Maureen Down is right. The Church protects the old guard. 

In 1969 MS Magazine had it's first preview issue. That was 46 years ago. 

This is the unanswered issue of our times. Essentially women are still ironing vestments in the basement of the Vatican. Even now the Catholic Church nearest to me, Mary Mother of the Church (coined Mary Mother of the Mortgage by a nun ) decided, no, little girls could NOT serve at the Mass: a fact which saddened even traditional women in the parish.

I have listened to MSNBC'S Chris Matthews say that here in the States and elsewhere, it is women who are aware of the school setting, who is teaching, what the needs of the children are, along with the needs/& care of the home. Some of these same women, of course, have their own careers. 

Years ago I said the Church will turn to women when they run out of men. I was wrong. Even in listening to comments the night before the Pope departed, I heard very closed minds about women in the Church--one of them being a bishop. The resistance regarding women as equals seems so monumentally foreign to the patriarchy that they can't even engage about it. So it's double-speak. They can't connect in meaningful ways.

We are told all the roles women are playing in the Church today. But the laity isn't seeing it. It seems we can be close to missionaries to Guatemala or Haiti, but heaven help us, we cannot be a deacon or say Mass. Years ago at St. Joan of Arc in Minneapolis, a deacon introduced his wife, who was allowed to become a deacon only because he was.

He said, "You will hear how profoundly more eloquent and able she is than I."

She was given a standing ovation.

I am now grasping once again, why my former teacher and mentor in grades 6-8th grades, so Italian her father and uncle were from Italy--has left the Church.

When John Paul II said he didn't want "cafeteria Catholics," it angered my brilliant friend. She left the Church and is now a Episcopal Eucharist minister. She has even stood in white robes near stairs to the subway train and administered ashes on Ash Wednesday. It's an insult to offer a women with a Ph.D. anything but equality.

She hopes she will see inclusion and family planning in her lifetime in the Catholic Church. Now I'm pondering if I'll see it.

And it isn't as if celibacy, hierarchy, patriarchy and secrecy have been a resounding success.

I'm always praying that someone opens the windows! Airs the place out! Is magnanimous to all: Welcome everyone! There are women giants who have the calling, the brilliance and grace to serve the Church in outstanding ways.

I am pulling for Pope Francis, but I am painfully aware--he is but two years short of 80 years of age.

A Franciscan Laity group I saw pictured in Rome within the last two years--were predominantly gray, or capped with white hair.  Young, educated, Hispanic women aren't attending the Church of their mothers.

Recently a dear friend who has served her Church for decades in major ways asked herself: What has the Church done for me?

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Pope of Mercy

Pope Francis at Youth Day 
at Haimi Castle in Korea 2014 /
Closing Mass for Asian youth

Pope Francis is a comforter, a teacher, a Model of Mercy. This is what he wants for us in our own interaction with the world. 

It has been impossible for me to watch several days of Pope Francis' trip to the United States with a dry eye. Indeed, I have wept twice.

Though I have issues with the Church of my youth--who, who cannot be taken with the compassion of this man? 

As we've witnessed Pope Francis weave through his incredible days here---there the little ones are, at rest and waiting, with their devoted parents, those with special and debilitating diseases and handicaps in the hopes Francis might, just might stop and touch their heads and hearts. 

All the youth the Pope has touched are actually not victims though the Church has the term "victim saints," and they may well be on that road of grace. 
Here is the truth that turns everything on its head.

What I would lift the parents with is the knowledge that:
We choose our parents and siblings and thus time and place on the soul level before we arrive here.

Therefore, these beyond challenged children the Pope has blessed and kissed are on a holy mission. They have accepted, they have chosen--a limited body for all the lessons they will experience within it. 

One can certainly grasp that our spiritual evolution or theirs would be sped by such a life of sacrifice. 

The Pope keeps highlighting those of us without, those of us "on the margins," forgotten, hungry and in need of outstretched arms. As a simple yet complex man of grace, Francis models how to live Christ in the world. 

We can ignite our own lives by observing, by seeing, his flame: visiting the incarcerated, seeing the elderly, reaching to console the homeless, and honoring peace and foregiveness within our own families.

At first I cried when Francis entered St. Patrick's in New York City. Just one of my thoughts was: He may never come again. We simply don't know. So every moment is precious and never to be repeated. 

A goal I have is to read through all St. Francis' speeches at each venue. I want to wrap myself in his illuminated words. This Pope is a gift for our times. The Catholic Church has been in such a spiritual black hole. And then up pops Francis, having his own darker days when he was forced into seclusion by his own Jesuits.

Yet everything he has endured on his path to the Papacy, though he never sought it, has become who he is today.

I have prayed to my "Heavy Hitter" Saints to protect Pope Francis and allow him to Be With Us...modeling mercy, transforming souls.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Our Stories of Love

Lou, Master Gardener
Letting Go: Life's Lessons 

"Our personal stories of loss
Are really our stories of love;
If we hadn't had our years 
of love and bonding,
If the riches weren't there...
How could our tears fall over our warmed hearts?

Truly loss is a cycle of love within life."

When I moved into what was my father's condominium, I wasn't fixated on my new neighbors because I was healing from a near-fatal car accident. 

But when I did take in my fellow residents, I felt far younger than most who lived here. I was startled to see so many walkers and canes. But that has been changing. With so many long-time residents having lived at Woodhurst West for decades, one by one they begin, or continue to, "fly up." 

I realize it's the flow of life, but I've never had it so under my nose, or down the hall but a few yards, or cross the hall by a few feet. 

Angels have been active...all around me. In a previous post, I wrote about My Saints in the Corner: Joyce and Ed Stevens who spent a life in the ministry. When we lost them...I was so hit by the grace of who they were, and who they still are, that I memorized their favorite scripture and saved their memorials. 

Then the escorting angels moved one door to the right. My neighbor Frank in precarious health: COPD, conjestive heart failure, diabetes and more went to the hospital. Then he was diagnosed with cancer, entering hospice shortly thereafter. His journey was lovingly managed right where he and his wife Joan have lived right next to the Stevens. And right next to me.

At the family funeral for Frank, I saw all the pictures of he and his wife Joan's pictures from their wedding and dear posing at Niagra Falls. For the first time, I saw Frank as a younger man. I stood and stood by their honeymoon faces. I could see the noses and the chins, the soft smiles. I saw Frank's life in its entirety. 

It seemed only weeks ago I had delivered chicken soup from Valley Natural Foods and witnessed changes in trust documents, signing my name on various pages in their home.

I got holy water from Lourdes from the closest Catholic shop and prayed my heart out; but the miracles were not to be.

Then the escorting angels moved onto the next door where our master gardener, Lou, lives, my dear friend. I tried to do "distance healing" for her. I focused so hard on her lymph nodes and total healing. I admit I was crushed when the report following her round of chemo treatments wasn't good. I felt I had failed. 

Lou is battling pancreatic cancer; and I've been devastated to see her suffering and her face becoming so pale. I slip notes and cards under her door from "Connie Across-the-Hall." Now that's what she calls me: Connie Across the Hall. 

So you can see, if I needed to learn about letting go...I'm in a perfect place for it. 

A cousin in-law told me after our beloved family healer flew up, You don't want people to die.

I said: I wouldn't go that far. Secretly I know he's right. It's more that I feel, well, not so soon. Later. 

Last summer Lou managed the huge project of contractors removing our rotting, wooden logs that supported our retaining wall. Stone was voted on and with her brother's master garden in California in her head, Lou and other gardeners mapped out a flowering field at the summit of our hill and all the flowers potted behind our pool. It's a huge span of flowers. 

We never dreamt last summer when Lou put in hour upon hour on the hill digging, planting that she'd be moving on to other gardens so soon. 

She is in transition now. I'm trying desperately to find quotes and images to lift her. Yesterday I slipped a postcard from the Minneapolis Institute of Art under her door. It was a painting of the Christ taken down from the cross. I had been saving it. 

Stupidly I said: This is our ace in the hole, Lou: a treasure that must be shared. Put it on your pillow. 

I know how deep her faith. I was hoping to lift her past her pain. 

Two weeks ago, I called 911 after another neighbor banged on my door. She nearly or did collapse in my arms. She said I'm so dizzy; could this be the flu? She was perspiring heavily, getting sick in the hall. I grabbed a metal planter inside my door to help her. Then I called for help. Her blood pressure was at 200. 

Molly went off her medications from a decade ago because she couldn't afford her medications. After a night in the hospital after which I picked her up, she said: Now don't worry about me. 

As I type, two doors down, Bill, brilliant, old and bent over, is in the hospital. Joan, mentioned above, knocked at my door with Bill's wife Ann (who has dementia) saying Bill was in the hospital with a blood clot and cellulities. I hugged them both...precious elderly.

I never knew how sweet Ann was until I hugged her. Why did it take me so long?

Sunday, August 23, 2015

When Hillary was Hurting--A Prayer

"CircaetusGallicus" by Juan lacruz - Own work. 
Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Commons -

A Prayer for Strength
and Healing

When Bill and hence, Hillary, were pilloried during their worst times in the White House, my heart went out to their suffering. My concern went to not only the President and his dreams but also to Hillary and Chelsea for what they were forced to endure. I wrote a prayer called: 

For Hillary and Chelsea
A Prayer for Strength 
             and Healing

May all the heavens
Above thee kneeling,
Give you Grace
Through Peace
And Healing:
May all kind hearts
In supportive love
Lighten your shoulders &
Strengthen--Your Resolve.

All Rights Reserved. 
Connie Nelson Ahlberg

In recent days, my prayer, never received, came to mind. 
It's time I shared it. 

Something pure must clear the air, something said in earnest to take a campaign beyond where it is today. I believe Washington Post opinion writer, Eugene Robinson, is right: Hillary needs to clear her path with an apology. I understand the rationale but time to rise out of an eagle.

Monday, May 18, 2015

George W. Bush on Religious Liberty

Japanese symbol for Unconditional love

It is both curious and not curious at all that former President George W. Bush chose to speak a few words on religious liberty in his commencement address at Southern Methodist University on May 16.

However since our freedom of religion is protected in the United States--I wish to take a look at the meaning of the words he chose to speak.

And finally, you can be hopeful because there is a loving God. Whether you agree with that statement or not is your choice. It is not your government's choice. It is essential (applause). It is essential to this nation's future that we remember that the freedom to worship who we want and how we want--or not worship at all--is a core belief of our founding.


The words freedom of religion "is not your government's choice," stand out. By in large, our beliefs aren't controlled by Washington D.C. nor state houses of government. So what could the President have meant by his remarks--on freedoms we already have?

Having been raised Christian, I feel I have an idea. Of course he was speaking at a Christian-affiliated university. One could say he was honoring their beliefs (and his own).

The more Conservative Right, however, isn't so vitally concerned about ALL religious freedom. They are fixated on their own. To some, the United States is for the Christians and by the Christians. And they feel they've lost ground. But this isn't a theocracy. The structure of our government lies in the separation of church and state.

Many hold, no matter that your faith may celebrate a different prophet than the Christ, that manger scenes should be allowed, still be seen on government property. And prayer should still be in public schools.

But not Muslim prayer, Buddhist chants, or Hindi offerings, but say, the Our Father.

The ills of our country, some vehemently protest, are due to our lack of prayer in the schools.

They point to our currency with the words: In God We Trust.

Many lament it is now Happy Holidays vs Merry Christmas and that Christmas trees are not emphasized. Respectfully the very word Christ is in the name of the tree and Christians holy holiday. Kwanzaa, the week-long celebration in December of African American culture, has not necessarily been embraced.

It isn't that I don't believe, but because I do. I believe I need respect you: whether Christian or atheist, agnostic, of the Jewish faith and traditions, Hindu practices, Morman, Islamic, or Buddhist. We also have Native American spirituality (which is more evolved than the faith which ignored an entire people who came after them from European shores.) Christianity shouldn't be considered thee faith of the United States, but one of many: all faiths and non-faiths deserving mutual respect.

The Baha'i faith is one of inclusion of all peoples; I marvel at the oneness in their belief.

The close of the President's speech I can do nothing but applaud for he spoke on unconditional love. We need keep returning to mutual respect--so all, all are honored in peace--and not conflict.

We are not diminished with arms open wide in inclusion.
Rather we expand our own hearts and the earth's evolution when we live it.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Precious Moments with My Dad

Lake Superior, Grand Marais, MN
Grand Marais Chamber of Commerce

On April 13th I drove five hours to see my dad. I had the glee of a child. It was my 68th birthday and I'm rich enough to still have my dad. The miles from the Twin Cities to northern MN flew by. 

On May 11, one day after my mother's birthday on the celestial level, my dad turns 100.5. There will be a cake and humble celebration. If you think I can comprehend the span of time in which he's lived--you would be wrong because I can't.

Since my dad sleeps a lot--he wasn't up when I got there. It was after 4:00 in the afternoon, and he was resting. Willard was asleep. I went in and started to sing my own birthday song to our party of two. He awoke happily; he was instantly elated to see me and joined into the silliness of the moment. (It reminds me of a day over twenty years ago when I ran into my mother at our local K-Mart. Her face was radiant. It was like she more than won the Blue Light Special. No, she had won the lottery.)

There aren't a long line of people who want to join you in a dance on the day you were born. But I knew we'd make music together: this was my dad. 

I said we had to celebrate and would he come with me! He was game, after all he spent a life in sales, and he knew a sales pitch when he heard one. 

The Blue Water Cafe was closed so we made the stairs at the Gunflint Tavern. He ordered a gyro sandwich because I told him mother loved them. But he didn't know what to do with the Greek-wrapped sandwich on his plate when it was placed in front of him. Still, he ate it as best he could. The tooth pic holding it together puzzled him. 

We had a fruit cobbler as I felt I didn't need all the sugar in their no doubt, man-sized carrot cake. (Indeed, I felt my dad would faint over the price.) 

Over my few days on the Shore as we call it (short for North Shore), the list of happiness was a list of little things. He loved seeing his old '99 Buick Century; even more, he was delirious to sit in it. It was like seeing and being with an old friend. His old polka tapes still sat in the console he'd purchased to hold coffee and change. 

Every day was a love-fest as I didn't drive north in the winter months. We would talk often, sometimes even he calling me. But nothing could match the promised "forehead kisses" given in person.

On perhaps the most outstanding day of my short visit, we did make it to the Blue Water Cafe for the blueberry pancakes he loves so much. It used to be a stack of three, but now it's one blueberry pancake, three strips of bacon, and syrup (warmed, thank you). You are special at 100!

The topper after our brunch was taking my brother's suggestion to swing into the Dairy Queen. He didn't like how I pulled in, but that's all right--shades of years ago. I ran inside and purchased two small vanilla ice cream cones. I delivered it to him as if I was on skates at a car-hop through his lowered window.

Then we drove to where the Coast Guard station is situated and looked at the idyllic Grand Marais harbor. He was out of his mind. He insisted he hadn't had a cone in YEARS, while I know my brother has taken him there in recent times.

I cautioned him to keep licking the cone or it could get the best of him. Then he expressed his joy as only he could: 
I feel twenty-five years younger, he said.

See what a simple cone can do?

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Song of the Sage

"Grace Elvina, Marchioness Curzon of Kedleston" 
by John Singer Sargent - Wikimedia Commons

O Keeper of Wisdom! O Giver of Gifts!
You gave so softly with Thy lips,
You gave so softly I never knew--that
Ever softly wisdom grew;
For my calendar turned a page,
On the softest day I ever knew!
The calendar of my days
Turned into You--
So softly as sage my age turned
Wisdom's truth--;
So now they come both broken
And whole, telling
Scattered secrets of their soul;
And I full of wonder open wide;
Listening, all my wisdom seemingly tied
To Yours alone, with my experience sown,
So softly into my words no one heard!
So softly spoken, in mystical ways,
You blessed me with wisdom
And I turned--Sage!

©1995 Connie Nelson Ahlberg - All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Rising / My Saints in the Corner

The Last Supper by Salvador Dali

To save the world, starting and staying with our own breath,
we need to continually open to our prophet as ego falls away
like a coat too cumbersome to wear.

Our spiritual life isn't dependent on the retail calendar. Indeed we are better off by ignoring it.

If everything is part of our path as Buddhists teach, then it truly is an Earth School here.

I have a theory that one of my missions is to learn to: let go. Currently I am living in what was my parents' condominium called Woodhurst West surrounded by tenents who may have moved into Woodhurst in the '70's or '80's. Simple math tells you their lives would be drawing to a close.

Yet I've found I'm rarely ready for my neighbors to "fly up," as I say. I am perpetually startled. What Buddhists plan for in their daily mindful meditation, Christians seek to ignore. "I'll think about that tomorrow," in the tradition of Scarlet O'Hara sums up many of us.

I feel I get to know and appreciate residents belatedly if at all. I find myself mourning, in one case, a retired minister and his wife who died five months from each other. I call them my "Saints in the Corner." First Joyce Stevens died unexpectedly from a blood clot following knee surgery. I bought a garden angel to honor her. To keep the pottery angel free from blemish, it rests on my white carpet.

"I lift up my eyes to the hills, from whence cometh my strength," Psalm 121. Now the scriptural quote on Joyce Steven's memorial is my favorite as were the voluminous cream roses on her casket. Their petals were as exquisite as the life they honored.

After Joyce Stevens died, I saw her husband's light all the more. I found him remarkable. I was crestfallen that I had been so late to discern the humility, grace, and intelligence of Ed Stevens and his wife. Ed was always smiling, somewhat whimsical, and toward the end, forgetful and unsteady.

Once I happened to be in the garage with him and saw he was on route to dispose of his light bag of trash. As we walked side-by-side, Ed started to lean too far over; and I grabbed his sleeve with a gentle tug.

Catch me if I'm falling.

Their unit hasn't sold so I still see their nameplate near their door. They should be inside I tell myself, still living the decorum we all saw. They were private. And we all respected their privacy. After two lives in religious service to various church communities, they deserved just the green trees, hostas, family and friends gathering around. 

 Ed Stevens
Joyce Stevens

Joyce told me once that either she or her daughter had a poem of mine. I can only say, I have their lives. 

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Siding with Pope Francis

Pope Francis 

The Pope recently commented that were you to dishonor his mother, you could get
a poke from "Papa Francisco."

This comparison arose in answer to the Charlie Hebdo attacks on January 7, 2015 after the publication of images of Mohammad. 

It was interesting to me that a co-founder of Charlie Hebdo newspaper, Henri Roussel, felt his editor, Stephane Charbonnier, went too far in inflaming and offending Muslims around the world. Roussel described Charbonnier as "brilliant, but stubborn." (CNN)

When the attack upon Charlie Hebdo occurred, the civilized world was shocked and gathered en masse to proclaim: JESUIS CHARLIE (I am Charlie.) And Henri Roussel was condemned by Richard Malka, Charlie Hebdo's attorney, as "polemical and venemous."

But protests by Muslims erupted in Karachi, Pakistan, Jordan, Alger, Niger, Mali, Somalia, Senegal, and Mauritania. (Sophia Saifi Pakistan)

Are all these hearts and passions to be dismissed? 

What I find disturbing is the challengers to the Muslim faith are from a cartoonist, Charbonnier, and artist, Lars Vilks. Lars' cartoon showed Mohammed on the body of a dog. Each felt it was their right under free speech to "poke the bear," as a benign, elder friend of mine expressed.

Charbonnier was "an athesist and a pacifist." The irony is profound.

Lars Vilks says he is an "equal opportunity offender." He not only has drawn Mohammed on the body of a dog in a roundabout, but also Jesus as a pedophile.

Provoking is what Vilks does well. In his youth he placed his artist "installations" in a protected nature preserve. 

Here is my  agrument: Is it up to non-religious individuals to confront Islam on their sacred beliefs? Isn't it more appropriate the evolution of a faith lies within the spiritual leaders and the faithful vs outsiders who seek to defy it?

The actions of Vilks and editor Stephane Charbonnier offend. They also garner little respect by many who believe in Christian tenets or Jewish beliefs. 

Why insult a religion in which the devout kneel and pray with greater consistency than many believers of other faiths?

Vilks, who hasn't found acclaim through his art, has sought attention in any way he can--like defying religious beliefs of Muslims to not depict their spiritual leader on paper, in print--at all. 

Violence against human beings is a horrific path. 

But I feel there is no honor in what Vilks is trying to do. I do not defend him. 
And the fact that Charbonnier was a pacifist yet believed in defiance against Islam which caused harm and violence in believers doesn't compute either. How praiseworthy is it?

These words are not in defense of terrorists. 

I side with the ower of Charles Hebdo who said--the actions of the newspaper were pushed too far. Insanely too far. Thus the pacifist invited death. 

I can't support individuals who disrespect the beliefs held by others. Why are they
the arbitors of what is right? 

Thich Nhat Hanh has taught us that Peace is Every Step. We are here to honor each other. I think this is what the Pope was saying. Dear Francis, with few words he said it all. 

Friday, February 13, 2015

Prayer of the Soulmate

St. Guenole
Chapel at Prigny (Loire-Atlantique)
Single girls place a needle into the foot of the Saint
So they may find their soulmate.

True friendship is a road to God;
And, yes, Lord, I am Your soulmate
Inseparable from You
On all the paths to my friends;

Yet some, Lord, take me to a higher road
Where each nuance, laugh, and lift of the head
Towards the heavens is hardly spoken
The silence not broken yet everything understood.

My road has breathless curves on all sides;
Views unseen before
I traveled with You.

We laugh bent over
And know it is Good.

The road on which we never stood
Becomes a precious place! Joy in the moment!
That human face more intricate than treasured lace,
This road to my friend
Which ends in You.


Written about a best friend many years ago.