Thursday, May 2, 2013

May Magnificat

Well, I’ve had quite a bit to say this week, and some of it perhaps a bit heady or even ponderous at times. Meanwhile, it is May, and it is exceptionally, extraordinarily beautiful here in Canada – sun and warmth, bud and blossom, birds and all woodland creatures exploding with life and energy.

It is May, Mary’s month, and so here very simply are a few thoughts in rhyme from G.M. Hopkins. I’ll be back tomorrow with more of my own words; today, let’s leave it with Hopkins May Magnificat:

May is Mary's month, and I
Muse at that and wonder why:
Her feasts follow reason,
Dated due to season—

Candlemas, Lady Day;
But the Lady Month, May,
Why fasten that upon her,
With a feasting in her honour?

Is it only its being brighter
Than the most are must delight her?
Is it opportunist
And flowers finds soonest?

Ask of her, the mighty mother:
Her reply puts this other
Question: What is Spring?—
Growth in every thing—

Flesh and fleece, fur and feather,
Grass and greenworld all together;
Star-eyed strawberry-breasted
Throstle above her nested

Cluster of bugle blue eggs thin
Forms and warms the life within;
And bird and blossom swell
In sod or sheath or shell.

All things rising, all things sizing
Mary sees, sympathising
With that world of good,
Nature's motherhood.

Their magnifying of each its kind
With delight calls to mind
How she did in her stored
Magnify the Lord.

Well but there was more than this:
Spring's universal bliss
Much, had much to say
To offering Mary May.

When drop-of-blood-and-foam-dapple
Bloom lights the orchard-apple
And thicket and thorp are merry
With silver-surfed cherry

And azuring-over greybell makes
Wood banks and brakes wash wet like lakes
And magic cuckoocall
Caps, clears, and clinches all—

This ecstasy all through mothering earth
Tells Mary her mirth till Christ's birth
To remember and exultation
In God who was her salvation.

1 comment:

  1. Here's another spring poem...

    A Purification

    At the start of spring
    I open a tench in the ground.
    I put into it
    The winter's accumulation of paper,
    Pages I do not want to read again,
    Useless words, fragments, errors.
    And I put into it
    The contents of the outhouse:
    Light of the sun,
    Growth of the ground,
    Finished with one of their journeys.

    To the sky, to the wind, then
    And to the faithful trees,
    I confess my sins:
    That I have not been happy enough,
    Considering my good luck,
    Have listened to too much noise,
    Have been I attentive to wonders,
    Have lusted after praise.

    And then upon the gathered refuse
    Of mind and body,
    I close the trench,
    Folding shut again the dark,
    The deathless earth.
    Beneath that seal,
    The old escapes into the new.

    Wendell Berry( collected Poems)

    Nice talking with you today. Please God, you will make it to Minnesota.


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