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

Poems for Holy Week - 4 of 4

What the Angels Sang

And then he will send out the angels and gather his elect
from the four winds, from the end of the earth to the end of the sky.
    ~Mk 13:27

If we were to start to tell their names, so many,
One by one, the sky would soon fill with light, the trees
Awaken, and the air wrap itself in folds of wool

Round the rows of houses standing out in the cold.
Soon it would happen . . . all would return, one by one, so many . . .
Yes, it helps on a day like today to remember

We possess such holy powers—to memorize
The names of the nameless of each age, to let them
Spread through our veins, be reborn on a shout.

We live now ready for that bright world we speak of,
Though we speak haltingly, fumbling over our wonder.  Yet
We speak, for that is the power of the fire of this love.

And when the sun rises tomorrow, the many souls who wait here,
Countless thousands, will they have grown still wearier,
With nothing but this hope and its daily disappointment?

It is time to gather strength.  Our thoughts are charged
With the weight of a hand resting on our shoulder:
"Carry them into tomorrow.  Let none be lost."

Written by Fr. Bonaventure Sauer, OCD
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