Begin your week with a poem, piece of music, inspirational video, or thoughtful reading to enrich your life!

Each week we will send you an email containing a short meditation that gives you some breathing space. Each week something new. Each week something beautiful. 

TODAY'S BREATHING SPACE

The Paraclete Poetry Corner - Summer 2021

'Tune in' to the Paraclete Poetry corner this summer. Poems are infinite in variety, mostly short blessings, perfect for summer on the porch, in the woods, or on the beach. Relax into God's summer in bloom and be refreshed by God's creation in its fullness. Beauty surrounds us, urging us to open to him. Poetry embodies the feelings, metaphors, and images beyond our minds allowing us to softly and gently 'tune in.'

If you love words well-chosen, the enticing turn of a phrase, and the rhythm of ten artful beats to a line, you will enjoy How Does He Love Me?  a collection of sonnets. Brad Lussier describes love in various terms, closing the gap between Eros and Agape and offering a fresh understanding of divine love. The simple words paint cavernous visions of love standing alone as alive and real. They radiate joy.

The poems in Dreaming of Stones are about what endures: hope and desire, changing seasons, wild places, love, and the wisdom of mystics. Inspired by Christine Valters Paintner's time living in Ireland, these readings invite you into deeper ways of seeing the world.  Drawing on her commitment as a Benedictine oblate and her contemplative heart, the poems arise out of a practice of sitting in silence and lectio divina; a time in which life becomes the holy text.

If you crave variety, Eyes Have I that See by John Julian is a 'must read.' This collection of poems differs widely in style and genre, the earliest poem being published in 1959 and the most recent in 2015. Some have traditional rhyme schemes and others are in free verse.  Eyes Have I that See is a rich distillation of word and craft born over thirty years of the deep work of silence. Silence stripped the poet's work down to the essential, while empowering him with piercing vision, passion for the holy, a sharp and attentive ear, a sense of humor, and a gift for words. 

Rejoice and receive the generosity of Luci Shaw's parable poems. The Generosity illuminates in splendored natural detail how the seasons of creation parallel and explain the seasons of her life as a poet. These poems shower us with glorious epiphanies from the natural world as they reflect God's generosity at work. Like Wordsworth, Luci is a highly gifted landscape poet whose poems are rich in imagery from the physical world: meadows filled with seeds, flowers, and shoots—animals too, present in the great and small, beetles, crickets, voles, bears and whales. God is likened to a great bear who leaves paw tracks for us to follow! The poems in The Generosity are deep in their faith with vibrant colors and designs. Rejoice and receive!

Kenneth Steven is a bard in the richest and fullest sense of the word. Iona is essentially a love song to a precious and extraordinary place on earth, a place of pilgrimage—and for Kenneth Steven his spiritual home from early childhood days. His poems are invocations of the Divine Presence in the wild places of the Scottish Highlands and in our hearts and souls. We find ourselves not only reading the words but being invited to inhabit them. This is a book both for those who know and love the island, and for those who yearn to visit but have not yet had the opportunity.

The Chance of Home
    "Somewhere there must be where
     no one wonders whether you belong…"
 
This is a remarkable collection from a popular poet and scholar of mysticism, Mark S BurrowsThese poems remind us that “home” shapes us, but not as a particular place; home is a way of being in this world both for us and for the creatures with whom we share it. Home finds expression in the inner light that carries us through dark seasons and in what inspires us. Home comes to us in the unexpected glimpses of a wholeness resonant enough to hold us amid the fragments. These poems ponder a resilience that lies at the heart of the natural world, as well as our desire to thrive amid the distractions that pressure our lives. We are invited to linger at the edges of silence, and wonder what it means to listen for a song that can bring solace and delight.

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