The Angel of Instead

boulder

Angel of Instead

When you ask for help
a boulder may roll
down into your path

tempting you to curse it
and throw away your faith in prayers
but if you crouch low

you may discover
not exactly a boulder
but the Angel of Instead

tipping you off to the side,
into the unmapped berry-wild,
the unconsidered solution.

 
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an angel and a dog: an interim blessing

angel-and-dog

I’ve been in a creative cocoon, a lot going on inside, but not much to see from the outside. While hoping for a poem to emerge, I got this spontaneous sketch instead. It came from nowhere, like a blessing, and it made me smile.  I started with an arc which became the angel’s face, and I finished with a dog. It’s a simple drawing, but I hope you like it. And maybe you’ll be inspired to set your own pen down on a piece of spare paper and without thought or plan, follow the ink until the lines create a message and blessing just for yourself.

Monday Morning Mary: Into the Woods

Artist Woods

Into the Woods

What is the difference
between helplessness
and surrender?
Between lamenting your lot
and surrendering to grace?
It is this:
the Artist’s Woods,
rife with peril and mercy.
Keep going, I tell myself
in the musical sunlight.
Maybe, I tell myself
in the circles of fog.
And in the scary night,
when I can only crouch,
I listen for an angel to tell me
Be brave.
Mary of Dell

Monday Morning Mary: From Gray to Grace

 

Angel Wing in Sky

From Gray to Grace

Today you have been given gray skies.
Although your intellect prefers black and white,
and your inner child prefers sun,
look past the easy connections of gloom
and uncertainty.

Instead, pause quietly
and allow the luminous gray
to reveal itself as an angel’s wing
spanning over you
in protection.

Send your questions skyward,
and in your unknowing,
discover the shelter of grace.

 

Mount Saint Mary - Perpetual Help

Mount Saint Mary’s Academy, Watchung, NJ

 

Ask for a Gift

Ask for a Gift by Lake

The late Irish philosopher and mystic, John O’Donohue, said if you’re ever stuck or upset, ask your angel for a gift. You don’t need to ask for anything specific. Just ask for a gift, or for lots of them if you like (I do), and surprising things will turn up. By not asking for anything specific, you open yourself up to infinite possibilities. And now instead of being mired in your problem, you are relaxing in the knowing that someone, a loving being, is helping you. John O’Donohue says your angel is your constant companion. The act of asking your angel anything is a reminder to you that you are never alone.

Recently, this thought surfaced in an unexpected way. In a moment of exasperation, to calm myself down, I grabbed some color markers, and started writing in big letters exactly what you see below. Not only did it make me feel better, but I’ve found myself since then calling up this prayer at various not so upsetting times, just to reset my thinking, bring me back to the present moment, or simply to ask my angel for something.

Go ahead and say the prayer for yourself. And don’t forget to ask your angel for a gift.

 

Sometimes Prayer

 

Crossing Threads

Crossing Threads 2

Crossing Threads

If I were wise
I would see that yesterday’s troubles
are vapor.
I survived
even the really bad spell
where I was not certain
my body would last until sunrise.

If I were wise
I would walk out into the sunlight today
not as if I were secured to this life
by a mere spider’s thread
so afraid to test its strength, but
free, just free.

If I were wise
I would sense how
this world and the numinous world
are always weaving through each other,
visible and invisible filaments of energy and love,
how occasionally they tangle
and join briefly in a knot,
how at that knot we come close
so close to crossing,
but then an angel
or an ancestor
yanks us free.

If I were wise
I would see that
my angel yanked me free last night
so I could sit under this tree today,
and think about what she meant when she said,
We will cross that thread
when we come to it.

Prayer at the Crest of the New Year

Snow Angel and Rabbit2

Prayer at the Crest of the New Year

May I remember to do one kind thing.
May I be grateful for all the people to whom I can say
I love you
May I say
I love you
to at least one of them.
May I also remember to say it to myself.
May I do these things today
and on days I forget about this prayer.

May I seek out something yellow
in any configuration.
Even if it is a yellow stripe on the spine
of a thin volume of poetry,
may I consider its contribution to the spine, the poetry,
and my heart,
because I’m about to leaf through the volume
and stumble upon my new favorite poem.