Life after Epiphany

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Sonnet of Self-Dedication

Otherwise entitled: “Prayer of a Postulant.” This was written during my Postulant year – but the themes hold true even out here in lay life. Perhaps even more than at the time of writing.

– – – – –

King of the deep, Lord of the storm
Command mine raging heart be still
To ponder Your Incarnate form
To contemplate Your holy will.

Now stir me up with zeal for souls
and send me out to push the plough
To run t’ward the Eternal Goal
Then live the Everlasting Now.

Yet in my weakness, Lord, I fall
Please help me humbly stand again
Would that for love of You, my all
Be in Your service wholly spent.

Saviour, King, Beloved, Friend:
Totus Tuus, till my life’s end.

– – – – –

(A dusty sketch from October 2011)


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dulce et decorum est

The Poet quoth the Roman:

“Dulce et decorum est
pro patria mori”
Were “Patria” Your Kingdom,
the Truth this mayhap be
and yet, if mori happens
though not for love of You
it makes these words sheer vanity
and renders them untrue.

– – – – –

(A dusty sketch started in November 2012, completed September 2013)

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on knowledge: babel-onian captivity

it’s a strange world in which i live,
the fruits of a cultural rebellion.

the perpetrators would no doubt cringe
at this choice of words –
“Revolution,” they would attempt to correct.
“we liberated the human mind.”

but i can see past their self-important claim.

i was not alive to watch
as the wise and dignified flag of academia was violently divorced
from its proud, long-fought

and trampled underfoot
by those who would hoist the new
cloth of childish insolence.

this new flag is naught but the symbol
of a misguided collective of individual clones,
hell-bent on drowning out the battle-hardened, even voice of experience
with the clamour of their unified disparity.
no, this occurred before my time,
but it is i and my brethren that suffer the consequences.
the arrogant son wins academic recognition
through the cruel subversion of his father’s work.
we fail to grow, we – a tired humanity.
we exhaust ourselves trying not to be dumped
by the wave we are riding
as the next big one rolls in behind to supplant it.
with each generation
we tear down that which our elders have built
foundations and all
and we fool ourselves into thinking we are the great achievers
as we watch, with misplaced pride,
our own building grow taller.
what fools we are!
our children will tear it down when we are done,
to callously make room for their own toy tower.
gone are the days when knowledge persisted
from generation to generation.
persisted – expanding on that which existed
and grew – building on that which we knew
representing so much more than could be achieved
in one, short lifetime.
for as long as this world continues to believe
they are faster
and stronger
and more intelligent than their predecessors,
reinventing the wheel thrice as often as the passing of Halley:
so shall human minds stagnate in chains.
the legacy of the 20th century.

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on poetry

brief musings, most –
but half expressed;
their potency in the reception.

a glance at all the words address,
good food for deep reflection.

and is it art?
for those that study – aye.

yet not for we
the faithful scribes,
notating thought and feel in shorthand

the talent lies not in telling;
artistry resides in receiving.

– – – – –

(A dusty sketch from 28 Nov 2009)

this piece is not intended to proffer the view that “beauty is in the eye of the beholder”. I believe that beauty is a transcendental, an objective reality, and the extent to which beauty can be apprehended is in the extent to which one’s perception corresponds with that objective reality. What this poem intends to convey is best encapsulated in the last couplet, written after the pattern of a Hebraic Parallelism, if you will. Most of the skill is required and applied at the level of receiving/beholding/interpreting. In this world of ours, groaning under the oppression of modernist ideology, it is a notable achievement to be able to perceive truth, to be able to apprehend reality. I suppose my need to include this addendum attests to my belief that our ability to identify truth is under attack and needs all the help it can get.

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give thanks to the Lord for He is good… (JGL 1)

… His love endures forever! I experienced God’s love today:

  • in a wonderful trans-Pacific conversation with a dear friend
  • in the warmth of the cheery sun as I drove along the motorway
  • in the company of another dear friend
  • in a coffee well-made and well-presented
  • in delicious vegetarian fettucine for lunch
  • in a well-poured beer enjoyed outside in a sunny, breezy spot
  • in an exciting idea
  • in a suprise visit from two friends and the opportunity to take them with me to mass and benediction
  • in a cup of tea my dad made for me when he didn’t realize I was hoping for coffee… I enjoyed the tea because dad made it!
  • in the silence I’m enjoying right now
  • in reading and re-reading a beautiful poem written for me by my friend

– – – – – – –

NB: JGL = Journal of God’s Love
What IS the Journal of God’s Love?

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from an age ago…

seasons change

does the sun resent the clouds, when they come out to play?
for the sun needs to vacate its playground in the sky sometimes;
and as it does and the aspect changes,
the sky weeps.

i listened, anticipating the answer, in hope.
anticipation perhaps obscured His response?

will he resent my choice, if i go another way?
no tears, i hope – not him, nor me
nor that tug inside that they oft accompany.

i pray the truth will make us free.

– – – – –

                                (A dusty sketch from Friday, 1 December, 2009)

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prequel: crossing seas

i always knew
and never did

He wants me, me? me!
not for what i can do,
but who i can be, no, who i am.

soon, I leave Dorothy’s sun-scorched sands behind
white-washed home under star-spangled banner, perhaps, to find.

words describe the scenario, all falls short of the meaning.

– – – – –

                        (A dusty sketch from Friday, 26 November, 2010)