A BIRTHDAY PRAYER
O God, I thank You for giving me another year of life.
I thank You for all the people who have remembered me today, and who have sent me cards and letters, good wishes and presents.
I thank You for everything which I have been abled by You to do and to be in the past year.
I thank You for all the experiences of the past year;
For times of success which will always be happy memories;
For times of failure which reminded me of my own weakness and of my need of You;
For times of joy when the sun was shining;
For times of sorrow which drove me to You.
For the hours I have wasted;
For the chances I failed to take;
For the opportunities I missed in the past year.
Forgive me for not making of life all that I might have made of it and could have made of it; and help me in the days which lie ahead to make this the best year yet, and in it to bring credit to myself, happiness to my loved ones, and joy to You.
This I ask for Jesus’ sake. Amen.
– From Prayers for Special Occasions, Fr William Barclay
Don’t let my light go out.
That plea haunting at night
When she felt her prana slack, her chi fade
When alone with no one about
Don’t let my light go out:
She whispered in the dark
Examined the babble of scribes
The words she now began to doubt
Don’t let my light go out!
Not now, not with a life half-lived
Her life-force as yet unspent;
Angry at last she began to shout
Curses at the images
3 August 2013
“Always say “yes” to the present moment. What could be more futile, more insane, than to create inner resistance to what already is? What could be more insane than to oppose life itself, which is now and always now?
“Surrender to what is. Say ‘yes’ to life — and see how life suddenly starts working for you rather than against you.”
― Eckhart Tolle, author of ‘The Power of Now’
That elusive thing keeping us going
That lubricator of motivation
That gives life its meaning
That precious ingredient amply
Bestowed on some, and not all
That seed needing nurturing
To produce belief in the greater god;
The feeling that no matter how
Bad a life, its maker understands
Forgives and loves:
That balm of peace.
That ointment of comfort.
That destroyer of fear.
That redeeming grace.
24 July 2013
on the lawns
Pimms jugs crackling;
in the sky
an airplane drones, then another –
in between, placidity:
on the water
a moorhen’s cry;
this pond, thickly green
like jelly under a crust of glass
a bird’s flight slices through it;
on the courts
the thud of tennis balls
then a triumphant male shout;
from the earth
the summer heat rising –
Life’s noises reprising
day in and out.
16 July 2013
Living the Moment to the Fullest
“Patience is a hard discipline. It is not just waiting until something happens over which we have no control: the arrival of the bus, the end of the rain, the return of a friend, the resolution of a conflict. Patience is not a waiting passivity until someone else does something. Patience asks us to live the moment to the fullest, to be completely present to the moment, to taste the here and now, to be where we are. When we are impatient we try to get away from where we are. We behave as if the real thing will happen tomorrow, later and somewhere else. Let’s be patient and trust that the treasure we look for is hidden in the ground on which we stand.”
– Henri Nouwen, Dutch Catholic priest, 1932-1996
When you shed layers of conceit
It’s like peeling an onion
Over a lifetime.
You come to the core
But there’s not much there
It’s as if you need the layers
Along the way
To plump your bulb.
Perhaps once you cut into the heart
The Ego dies
It is the end.
9 February 2001 / 13 June 2013
My own hovel being cleaned out,
a new life laid out for me
except I don’t yet see.
I must trust in this skylight
that has opened up –
this window on the world
setting me free.
I can now see
the life in this death
Why resist these little dyings?
It’s time to
step out of my skin.
*by Seamus Heaney
15 January 2010
LORD OF MY LIFE
“Thou who art the innermost Spirit of my being,
art thou pleased, Lord of my Life?
For I give to thee my cup filled with all
the pain and delight that the crushed
grapes of my heart had surrendered,
I wove with rhythm of colors and song cover for thy bed,
And with the molten gold of my desires
I fashioned playthings for thy passing hours.
I know not why thou chosest me for thy partner,
Lord of my life…”
– Rabindranath Tagore, 1861-1941
Do not fear the fire in your belly:
That shaft of flame rising
or the burning tongues on your head,
It is the shakti that stirs –
Who wakens the sleeping spirit
and warms the chakras?
Is that the chi I see
now snaking up like bolt of energy?
Where is my God in all of this?
He waits inside in secret.
© Millicent Danker
18 May 2013