Crafting Soul into WordsISBN: 978-1-4520-9276-8
Crafting Soul into Words: A Poet Sings of the Journey portrays both the frustrating difficulties and the exhilarating joys of the writing life. 166 pages.
Why I Bother
Who am I writing for, why do I bother?
It won't be easy saying.
While in grandiose moments I fantasize reaching millions,
realistically I hope to open at least a few
to feelings of vastness.
I think back to a young priest
who opened me up at the ripe age of 18
to poetry's magnificence,
to two poets in particular,
Gerard Manley Hopkins and Charles Peguy.
But what entranced me most was my mentor--
the light in his eyes,
the pitch in his voice,
the animated hands,
the joy pouring from him.
He brought Hopkins and Peguy to life for me,
connected them to my life.
I smile to feel his effect on me still
for opening me to feelings of vastness.
That I might do the same for at least a few others
is why I bother.
A Thought Came to Me
“A thought came to me" we idly say,
but from where?
Is every thought a reaction to an outer event
or else a push from the past
reducible to early life event or random chemical impulse?
Or, following Jung instead of Freud,
could not some thoughts come from the future,
from the seed dreaming, as acorn for oak tree,
within the heart of us each?
Consider the possibility that coming out of the blue
might be inchoate yearnings of a buried dream.
Not Less than Alladin
When reason says fold
but on occasion I keep writing,
it's not so much from lack of discipline
as trust in an intimation that more wants to come.
So maybe I get a drink,
stoke the fire,
stroke a lazing cat,
gaze on a child sleeping
before I sit down again to see
what pen might be wanting to free.
Not less than Aladdin before his lamp
does a writer sometimes stare in wonderment
at the genie curling from his pen.
Adding to Earth's Legacy
The time will come
when words on a page will speak for me
when my mouth is no longer able.
When, after bones are buried or ashes scattered,
someone is enlivened or emboldened by words I have written,
our spirits will not only intersect across time
What can match yielding
to the insistent ancient imperative within
to add to Earth's legacy by speaking one's truth,
singing one's song,
then shouting for sheer joy in the absolute trust
of enriching the Great Communion!