POETRY ABOUT GOD
Little one, wait.
Let me assure you this is not the way
to gain the terminal of outer day.
Its single gate
lies in your soul, and you must rise and go
by inward passage from what earth you know.
The steps lead down
through valley after valley, far and far
past the five countries where the pleasures are,
and past all known
maps of the mind and every colored chart
and past the final outcry of the heart.
No soul can view
its own geography; love does not live
in places open and informative.
Yet, being true,
it grants to each its Raphael across
the mist and night through unknown lands of loss.
Walk till you hear
light told in music taht was never heard,
and softness spoken that was not a word.
The soul grows clear
when senses fuse; sight, touch and sound are one
with savor and scent, and all to splendor run.
The smothered roar
of the eternities, their vast unrest
and infinite peace are deep in your own breast.
That light-swept shore
will shame the data of grief upon your scroll.
Child, have none told you? God is in your soul.
** Sr. Miriam of the Holy Spirit – 1945
The Selected Poetry of Jessica Powers Edited by Regina Siegfried and Robert Morneau. ICS Publications 2131 Lincoln Road, NE Washington, DC 20002-1199 Reprint of the most extensive anthology of this noted Carmelite poet, which she approved five weeks before her death. Includes introduction by Bishop Morneau.
The Garments of God
God sits on a chair of darkness in my soul.
He is God alone, supreme in His majesty.
I sit at his feet, a child in the dark beside Him;
my joy is aware of His glance and my sorrow is tempted
to nest on the thought that His face is turned from me.
He is clothed in the robes of His mercy, voluminous
not velvet or silk and affable to the touch,
but fabric strong for a frantic hand to clutch,
and I hold to it fast with the fingers of my will.
Here is my cry of faith, my deep avowal
to the Divinity that I am dust.
Here is the loud profession of my trust.
I will not go abroad
to the hills of speech or the hinterlands of music
for a crier to walk in my soul where all is still.
I have this potent prayer through good or ill:
here in the dark I clutch the garments of God.
from Jessica Power's Poetry: A Guide for Spiritual Growth
The Poems of Jessica Powers
You gather your children in your comforting arms.
Gather me close now.
You stand strong and protective, allowing no harm.
Like a bear with her cub, defend me now.
I have longer to know how you mother your children.
I have longed for your gentle love.
I have cried out for your safe, warm strength.
Mother, sweep away all that would keep me from you.
And rock me in your arms tonight.
My God walks with gentle steps,
My God talks with voice so soft,
My God dances gracefully,
My God holds the weak ones safe,
My God loves with mother love.
Fierce, protective, strong to save,
My God walks with gentle steps.
Nothing crushed by careless steps
When my God draws near.
Amen. P. 37
Who is She, neither male nor female, maker of all things, only glimpsed or hinted, source of life and gender?
She is God
Mother, sister, lover; in her love we wake, move, grow,
Are daunted, triumph and surrender.
Who is She, mothering her people, teaching them to walk,
Lifting weary toddles, bending down to feed them?
She is Love,
Crying in a stable, teaching from a boat,
Friendly with the lepers, bound for crucifixion.
Whis Is She, sparkle in the rapids, coolness of the well,
Living power of Jesus flowing form the Scriptures?
She is Life,
Water, wind and laughter, calm, yet never still,
Swiftly moving spirit, singing in the changes.
Brian Wren, hymn, Who Is She, Brian Wren, What language shall I Borrow, 141 -2
The Main Question
every naming of God
is a borrowing from human experience,
language slants and angles
our thinking and behavior,
makes qualities labeled "feminine"
inferior to qualities labeled "masculine"
forming women and men
with identities steeped in those labelings,
in structures where men are still dominant
and women still subordinate
though seeking emancipation...
Then it follows that
using only male language
("he," "king," "father")
to name and praise God
powerfully affects our encounter with God
and our thinking and behavior;
So that we must then ask
whether male dominance and female subordination
and seeing God only in male terms
are God's intention
or human distortion and sin;
these things are indeed
a deep distortion and sin,
women and men are called to repent together
from domination and subordination,
can we name and praise God
in ways less idolatrous,
and more true
to the Triune God
and the direction of love
in the Anointed One, Jesus?
By Brian Wren
from What Language Shall I Borrow?
©1989 Brian Wren
Creator God most beautiful
In the beginning
The earth was dark and without sound.
And God arose and began to dance
Creator God most beautiful –
And in the music of her song
She called forth all life into being.
I saw that night, for the first time, a Mother in the Deity. This indeed was a new scene, a new doctrine to me. But I knowed when I got it, and I was obedient to the heavenly vision. … And was I not glad when I found that I had a Mother! And that night She gave me a tongue to tell it! The spirit of weeping was upon me, and it fell on all the assembly. And though they never heard it before, I was made able by He Holy Spirit of Wisdom to make it so plain that a child could understand it.
Rebecca Jackson 19th century preacher in Reuther, Womanguides, 18