Monday, September 7, 2015

Pope Francis

Since watching the ABC special, "Pope Francis and the People," hearing a great homily about it today and living in Pennsylvania, one of his stops, I suppose it makes sense that I was also drawn to one of Mary Oliver's spiritual poems. Lovely reflection--here it is:


Sweet Jesus, talking
his melancholy madness,
stood up in the boat
and the sea lay down,

silky and sorry.
So everybody was saved
that night.
But you know how it is

when something
different crosses
the threshold--the uncles
mutter together,

the women walk away,
the young brother begins
to sharpen his knife.
Nobody knows what the soul is.

It comes and goes
like the wind over the water--
sometimes, for days
you don't think of it.

Maybe, after the sermon,
after the multitude was fed,
one or two of them felt
the soul slip forth

like a tremor of pure sunlight,
before exhaustion,
that wants to swallow everything,
gripped their bone and left them

miserable and sleepy,
as they are now, forgetting
how the wind tore at the sails
before he rose and talked to it--

tender and luminous and demanding
as he always was--
a thousand times more frightening
than the killer sea.