03 April 2008


I listened to a wonderful podcast from Speaking of Faith this week -- an interview with John O'Donohue. Here is one of his well-known poems of blessing, which he wrote for his mother at the time of his father's death. It's called, "Beannacht," which is the Gaelic word for blessing.

On the day when
the weight deadens
on your shoulders
and you stumble,
may the clay dance
to balance you.

And when your eyes
freeze behind
the grey window
and the ghost of loss
gets in to you,
may a flock of colours,
indigo, red, green,
and azure blue
come to awaken in you
a meadow of delight.

When the canvas frays
in the currach of thought (currach=a small boat)
and a stain of ocean
blackens beneath you,
may there come across the waters
a path of yellow moonlight
to bring you safely home.

May the nourishment of the earth be yours,
may the clarity of light be yours,
may the fluency of the ocean be yours,
may the protection of the ancestors be yours.
And so may a slow
wind work these words
of love around you,
an invisible cloak
to mind your life.

*To hear it read by the author with accompanying slideshow, click here.


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Risbek said...

Wow, there is so much God in this present darkness.