Tag Archives: sabbath

The Sabbath angels

National Poetry Month, Day 27 // Jews and some Christians observe today as the Sabbath, the week’s seventh day and a day to rest from their labors before beginning a new week. By sundown Friday, all work is to be completed and everything put in order for this holy day, which will end with sundown […]

In the lap of creation

National Poetry Month, Day 24  //  Because God rested after the six days of creation – so the story goes (Exod. 20:8-11) – we are to do the same, every seventh day of every week. Do nothing, the elders tell us, but let the work of God suffice without any contribution or meddling from us. […]

Restacking for a better load

National Poetry Month, Day 9  //  There are times when there’s nothing to do but stop and start over. I’ve experienced several such times, and I’ve gained so much from the stopping that it has become a staple of my spiritual practice. Emerson advised finishing one day before beginning the next and interposing a solid […]

The sacred pause

Within minutes of posting my morning message from Holloway Memorial Chapel (“Important work like sittin’ around fishin’), an article from Tara Brach came along to serve as a timely complement, “The Sacred Art of Pausing.” “We fill our days,” she observes, “with continual movement: mental planning and worrying, habitual talking, fixing, scratching, adjusting, phoning, snacking, […]

Time for stillness

“Be still,” we’re invited. And the fruit of stillness – genuine stillness, not the interstitial pause between the many agenda that claim our attention – will be an experiential knowledge of the Something Deeper that dwells in stillness, the something we call “God” (Psalm 46:10). Being still requires a lot of slowing down, for me, […]

This pushing off

This week I’ve been mostly disengaged from my usual occupations, or preoccupations, which has given me opportunity to consider again William Henry Davies’s observation, “A poor life this if, full of care, / We have no time to stand and stare.” Davies (1871-1940) was known as the “poet of the tramps,” a moniker that makes […]

On keeping Sabbath

Today is the anniversary of Emily Dickinson’s birth in 1830. According to The Writers Almanac, she published fewer than 15 poems during her lifetime. Most of her poems were enclosed in letters or given with gifts. When Dickinson died in 1886, her sister-in-law wrote in an obituary: “Very few in the village, excepting among the older inhabitants, […]

Silence

Few things are as calming, grounding, and renewing for me as the quiet, solitary hours I spend in the woods and fields from mid September to mid November. The stresses, challenges, or fears that burden my life begin to resolve and fall away almost as soon as I leave the well-traveled roads and enter the […]

Retreat

“Wherever I am, the world comes after me. It offers me its busyness. It does not believe that I do not want it. Now I understand why the old poets of China went so far and high into the mountains, then crept into the pale mist.” ―Mary Oliver