by Harriet Maxwell Converse
Translated from a traditional Iroquois prayer
We who are here present thank the Great Spirit that we are here
to praise Him.
We thank Him that He has created men and women, and ordered
that these beings shall always be living to multiply the earth.
We thank Him for making the earth and giving these beings its products
to live on.
We thank Him for the water that comes out of the earth and runs
for our lands.
We thank Him for all the animals on the earth.
We thank Him for certain timbers that grow and have sap coming
from them for us all.
We thank Him for the branches of the trees that grow shadows
for our shelter.
We thank Him for the beings that come from the west, the thunder
and lightning that water the earth.
We thank Him for the light which we call our oldest brother, the sun
that works for our good.
We thank Him for all the fruits that grow on the trees and vines.
We thank Him for his goodness in making the forests, and thank
all its trees.
We thank Him for the darkness that gives us rest, and for the kind Being
of the darkness that gives us light, the moon.
We thank Him for the bright spots in the skies that give us signs,
We give Him thanks for our supporters, who had charge of our harvests.
We give thanks that the voice of the Great Spirit can still be heard
through the words of Ga-ne-o-di-o.
We thank the Great Spirit that we have the privilege of this pleasant
We give thanks for the persons who can sing the Great Spirit's music,
and hope they will be privileged to continue in his faith.
We thank the Great Spirit for all the persons who perform the ceremonies
on this occasion.
Posted in The Daily Poems | Tagged Great Spirit, Iroquois prayer, Native American Thanksgiving, Thanksgiving poem | Leave a Comment »
I just love this online volume of poetry and art.
It is so beautiful, I think everyone should have the opportunity
to look at it:
Paper Scissors - Vol. I
Posted in The Reading Journals | Tagged Paper Scissors | Leave a Comment »
Something akin to a maiden strayed
from this marriage of song and string,
glowing radiant through veils of spring;
inside my ear a bed she laid.
And there she slept. Her dream was my domain:
the trees which enchanted me; vistas vast
and nearly touchable; meadows of a vernal cast
and every wondrous joy my heart could claim.
She dreamed the world. Singing God, how made
you that primordial repose so sound she never
felt a need to waken? Upon arising she fell straight to dream.
Where is her death? O, will you yet discover her theme
before your song is eclipsed forever? –
Abandoning me, where does she go?–something akin to a maid-
Ranier Maria Rilke, from Songs to Orpheus
trans. Robert Hunter
See also Rilke’s Letters to a Young Poet.
Posted in The Daily Poems | Tagged Letters to a Young Poet, Ranier Maria Rilke, Robert Hunter, Sonnets to Orpheus | Leave a Comment »
Oh little shadow. Little lurker into doorways. Little gypsy gypsy gypsy of a girl. Whose bird you were. Whose darkling in the branches on the underside of morning thrashed them into shimmering with parting as I turned. Who disappeared. Each bitter word or look dropped like a coin into your pocket, small gold hidden in the blindfolds of your skirt. Keep back. Come close. In cities made of falling and not falling, smell of smoke. Smell of wind and blood and ashes. Smell of dancing and of soot. They said Gypsy blacksmith forged the nails to kill their Christ; that’s the reason someone set the church bells ringing, sky in flames. And when you ran – burned from the clearing, all those black wings beating, beating – who ran with you, just behind you or before you, also flew? So spit your luck into the embers. Flash your name, if that’s your jewel. What cannot be torn away from you is deeper fire: sing.
Tsigan: The Gypsy Poem (2002)
Posted in The Daily Poems | Tagged Cecilia Wolloch, The Gypsy Poem, Tsigan | Leave a Comment »
“It swings forever to the absolute
crying out beauty like a silver flute.”
~ From “Broken Shell”
“Here sits the Unicorn,
leashed by a chain of gold
to the pomegranate tree.
So light a chain to hold
so fierce a beast,
delicate as a cross at rest
on a maiden’s breast.”
~ From “The Unicorn in Captivity”
“There is no harvest for the heart alone:
the seed of love must be
~ From “Second Sowing”
Posted in The Daily Poems | Tagged Anne Morrow Lindbergh, broken shell, Second Sowing, the unicorn in captivity | Leave a Comment »