While All the Others Were Away at Mass – Seamus Heaney

Seamus HeaneySeamus Heaney died on Friday. A poet who captured my heart long ago when I was just a wee girl too frightened to trust my own words. Perhaps I learned to love his verse because we held Belfast in common? But the streets he strode upon were a lifetimes away from the streets I trod, with only the “wideness of his language” to implant his thoughts in my heart. While others will point to his Nobel Prize, Digging, The North, or September 1969 to herald him as a laureate, for me it will be a bag of spuds waiting to be peeled that will bring his words to mind. Rest well dear Seamus. Thank-you for teaching me to write my own words upon the page and trust that they too had a wideness about them! Shalom.

Away at Mass

Penetrating Blue Moon

bluemoonAway from the bright lights of the city

the stars shine more deeply

penetrating cares and woes.

Then there is the moon:

the prognosticators announced that it would be blue,

as in once in a blue…

But I see only a light that penetrates deeply

with the power

to change the tides of my being

in ways that make my spirit sing.

“Poetry Knows We are Both Living and Dying at the Same Time” Marie Howe

Marie Howe“Marie Howe’s poetry is luminous, intense, and eloquent, rooted in an abundant inner life. Her long, deep-breathing lines address the mysteries of flesh and spirit, in terms accessible only to a woman who is very much of our time and yet still in touch with the sacred.”  —Stanley Kunitz      

kingdom of ordinary timeVacation’s gift of time has invited me to open a book of poetry. Poetry has no need to provide all the words. Poetry has only to provide the words to open us to ourselves.  Marie Howe’s latest collection “The Kingdom of Ordinary Time” has won for her the role of New York State Poet Laureate. Who knew states had laureates? Her words have gently opened me to myself. After posting this, I shall return to my bookshelves to unearth the collection in which Howe opened me to that which lives in and beyond me: “What the living do”.

For those of you who are not on vacation, watch this brief video of Howe reading some of her liminal work. Enjoy!


Star Market Marie Howe