Motet

Photography by Amaya Engleking

Green kelp sweeping
Fingers of the supernal hand
Brother keeping
Corialis stir of shoreland
Sea leak seeping
We become sun on salt and sand Read More

Advertisements

Stream

Art by Erin O’Malley


He’s more alive than anyone
The sheen of his corneas, the drops on his skin say
What sustains him
What other fishermen use for bait and lure is not Read More

New Refrain

Painting by Megan Triantafillou

Mass with mastitis
mother by marriage says we’ll go to see Mother Mary but I know you know better
drinking in the sacrament of breath…

…Symposium of spirits concentrate there,
a kiss to sustain the learning world when by day and night
it hardens,
angels martyred
only to meet the gathered light and song and with new refrain go right back IN
TO bodies as
shining epistles altering helices and species Read More

What the Young Man Said in the Stairwell

Chongqing, China

The thought of having to be around people is cause for anxiety and Joshua says that’s probably a motherly instinct. People are usually either trying to get you to glorify the past or expound on a future one can’t possibly know. It may even be blaspheming to try. Mothers of newborns must be present and attentive constantly, with very little room for error. No, I don’t know where I’m going to call home in three months, and it’s not my concern. God knows. But they who worship the god of security don’t even know how to hear this, let alone accept my decision to trust.

Yesterday I realized it was the tenth anniversary of the 2008 Sichuan earthquake. On that day I was working in the tallest building in Chongqing, a metropolis 300 miles from the epicenter. As I was teaching a class on the 15th floor, I felt the whole classroom start to sway. Read More

The Chosen Ones

Painting by Nick Andrew

Gripping wind’s reins
We weren’t supposed to love the wildness or poverty
or make a home of spruce boughs and the raw provisions of the wilderness
Set on eagle’s wings
We were supposed to taste manna as survival food, juniper berries, rich in bitters and ascorbate
Our dependence on your creation should have been a passing lesson
as we fled one oppressor to the next Read More

A Syllable

Painting by Teresa Saio

“It is a flash from the stage of non-belief to faith,
There is no more than a syllable between doubt and certainty;
Prize this precious moment dearly,
It is our life’s only fruit.”

– Omar Khayyam, from the Rubai’yat

I dive into the liquid syllable
Where pulpy time reveals the liminal Read More

Holy

The Medjugorje visionary saw Mary, Mother of God hovering above the couple’s marital bed years ago, on which we now all solemnly, humorlessly — the Catholic way — procession in and toss rose petals, strategically set as the climax of this strange retreat, hosted by the couple.
“And now, without further ado…”
Blessed be this holy site! Heal me from what ails me!

Miserere Domine!*

…In a nauseous wave I’m moved to clear the air and run out of the incensed house, myrrh potpourri and Advent boughs, perfected confectioneries and stained glass donation jars, into a southern December dusk where woods laugh but take my offering: Read More