Discalced Carmelite Friars

Province of St. Therese

Poet and Contemplative

“From the abundance of his spirit [the poet] pours out secrets and mysteries rather than rational explanation” (Prologue, The Spiritual Canticle).

“In contemplation God teaches the soul very quietly and secretly, without its knowing how, without the sound of words” (Chapter 39, The Spiritual Canticle).

In the spirit of St. John of the Cross, this blog reflects on the contemplative experience and the poetic experience, sometimes separately and distinctly, sometimes in common, as mutually enlightening.

I will also post to this blog, from time to time, my own poetry, with a short interpretive note attached.

~ Fr. Bonaventure Sauer, OCD

Three Poems for the Coming of Spring – Part 3

III.A Boy's Song of SpringI want to laugh and sing, to tell riddles or share with youThe dream that woke me this morning, feeding sunlight to my eyes.I want to mix my words with the clatter of a bluejay's boxcar as it passes,Throwing long, like a train whistle, the football of my thoughts.I want to ride Spring's purity of power, its unbridled freedom.  In a nutshell,To take up the joy of a lifetime
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Mercy, a Definition

~written at Marylake MonasteryMercy is, or is not, Beauty.Mercy is, or is not, maybe, the factThat there is Beauty, the suddenOnslaught of it at work among us.Day starts up, andThe spirit that animates such thingsApportions, first, fire, then a gentler lyricismUpon this fog that lingers over the lake.Alongside it stirs the further consideration that it'sMid-October, which can be aNostalgic time of
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God's Mercy, and Beauty – Part 2 of 2

  It is important to remember that beauty is not an attribute that simply adheres to or belongs to a thing—be it a natural object or scene, or a person, or a work of art.  Beauty, rather, is a moment of revelation.  We grasp it, it grasps us.  It is born of an interplay between our interior awareness and this something or someone, which interplay ends up bestowing on
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God's Mercy, and Beauty – Part 1 of 2

  Mercy and beauty have this much in common, they are both ecstatic.  By "ecstatic" I mean a movement of mind or heart that goes out from the self towards the other.  Ecstasy, while nothing like rapture, does entail, like rapture, a certain measure of self-forgetfulness.  Either I am drawn out of my usual self-absorption by an absorption or fixity upon another person
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