Lent Just In Time

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Two poems that brought me along to the sermon this Sunday, Lent 1, March 9th.  The first by Pablo Neruda, one of his many Odes, of the contrast in our experience between the enormity of the oceans of God and life, and our longing drawn to the small and specific and vulnerable at our feet, drawn back to earth just in time.

by Pablo Neruda, from All the Odes, translated by Ilan Stavans


Against the blue shaking its blue,

The sea, and against the sea,

A few yellow flowers.

October arrives.

And although

the developed sea is so important,

its myth, mission, yeast,

the gold

of a single yellow plant

explodes in the sand

and your eyes

are tied to the ground,

escaping from the magnanimous sea

and its whip.

We are dust, we shall become.

Not air, or fire, or water



we shall be

mere earth

and maybe

a few yellow flowers.

— And the second by W.S. Merwin about the quality of time in our lives, the discoveries of memory and of change and of surprise, from his newest collection of poetry.

by  W.S. Merwin from THE MOON BEFORE MORNING, 2014


For some time I thought there was time

and that there would always be time

for what I had a mind to do

and what I could imagine

going back to and finding it

as I had found it the first time

but by this time I do not know

what I thought when I thought back then

there is not time yet it grows less

there is the sound of the rain at night

arriving unknown in the leaves

once without before or after

then I hear the thrush waking

at daybreak singing the new song

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