Tag Archives: Living Like Francis Today

Happy Feast of St. Francis!

4 Oct

We hope you enjoy this poem of Galway Kinnell, “Saint Francis and the Sow”.

The bud
stands for all things,
even for those things that don’t flower,
for everything flowers, from within, of self-blessing;
though sometimes it is necessary
to reteach a thing its loveliness,
to put a hand on its brow
of the flower
and retell it in words and in touch
it is lovely
until it flowers again from within, of self-blessing;
as Saint Francis
put his hand on the creased forehead
of the sow, and told her in words and in touch
blessings of earth on the sow, and the sow
began remembering all down her thick length
from the earthen snout all the way
through the fodder and slops to the spiritual curl of the tail,
from the hard spininess spiked out from the spine
down through the great broken heart
to the sheer blue milken dreaminess spurting and shuddering
from the fourteen teats into the fourteen mouths sucking and blowing beneath them:
the long, perfect loveliness of sow.


Make this a St. Francis Day with Living Like Francis Today. Six faith-sharing sessions on Franciscan spirituality. Each session begins and ends with simple prayers from scripture or from the writing of St. Francis. Reflection questions invite groups to apply the themes to their lives.

Visit goodgroundpress.com to order online or call Lacy at 800-232-5533 to place your order.

Prayer is an invitation

12 Sep

Who is being summoned in this Robert Francis poem?

Summons

Keep me going to sleep too soon
Or if I go to sleep too soon
Come wake me up. Come any hour
Of night. Come whistling up the road.
Stomp on the porch. Pound on the door.
Make me get out of bed and come
And let you in and light a light.
Tell me the northern lights are on
And make me look. Or tell me clouds
Are doing something to the moon
They never did before, and show me.
See that I see. Talk to me till
I’m half as wide awake as you
And start to dress wondering why
I ever went to bed at all.
Tell me the walking is superb.
Not only tell me but persuade me.
You know I’m not too hard persuaded.


Let us persuade you to take some time for your spirit as we begin autumn. Go to goodgroundpress.com and look at our online retreats. Scroll through the Quick Links at the right of the home page until you find them. Or let Holy Women, Full of Grace guide your prayer, or Living Like Francis Today grace your days. Perhaps our prayer for the day can be your daily bread. Let us keep one another in our hearts these days.

Poem of the Week

21 Jul

The Stems of Flowers are the Pillars of the World
by Ellen Murphy, CSJ

Tempered by weather
welded by sun rays and metallic rain
the stems of flowers rise, poised,
erect as pillars they hold the world up.

Light-power, stronger than stone or steel
channels through leaf-scrolls
along each live green column
direct to its capital flower
joining the sky.

Each inevitable design
is a tenuous reminder
of the pillar of inner worlds: fidelity.
How it grows erect from a heart’s rectitude,
the seed selecting elements for growing
true to its form
draws cell  by cell to its quality,
color, texture,
reaches its height.

Indispensable for the holding up of the world
as stems of flowers, the heart’s fidelity.
The delicate stems of bluebells, true to themselves
are pillars of the universe, as you are,
as the rose and the gladiola,
lilac-bole, apple tree, oak and sequoia,
their protein strength gently holding
the world to its height, to its life-sheltering.


 

Living Like Francis Today is a short-faith-sharing book of Francis’ spirituality. Get a copy and find others to reflect with you on how to live his values today. View a sample chapter. $4.95. Order online or call Good Ground Press at 800-232-5533 to place your order.

 

 

Poem of the Week

15 Jun

 

St. Francis of Assisi is loved by Catholic and non-Catholics. Environmentalists claim him as their patron saint. Jorge Bergoglio added Francis to the list of papal names. Poet Galway Kinnell, a son of Ireland, finds Francis blessing a sow in the hog pen. Enjoy Kinnell’s poem. Find what makes Francis tick, and can inspire you, in Living Like Francis Today. Click here to read a sample chapter.

 

 

Saint Francis and the Sow

The bud
stands for all things,
even for those things that don’t flower,
for everything flowers, from within, of self-blessing;  
though sometimes it is necessary
to reteach a thing its loveliness,
to put a hand on its brow
of the flower
and retell it in words and in touch
it is lovely
until it flowers again from within, of self-blessing;  
as Saint Francis
put his hand on the creased forehead
of the sow, and told her in words and in touch  
blessings of earth on the sow, and the sow  
began remembering all down her thick length,  
from the earthen snout all the way
through the fodder and slops to the spiritual curl of the tail,  
from the hard spininess spiked out from the spine  
down through the great broken heart
to the sheer blue milken dreaminess spurting and shuddering  
from the fourteen teats into the fourteen mouths sucking and blowing beneath them:
the long, perfect loveliness of sow.

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