though the heart breaks

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In human intimacy there’s a secret border:

love’s being, love’s passion, cannot pass –

though lips are sealed together in sacred silence,

though the heart breaks in two with longing.

*****

from “intimacy” by anna akhmatova, translated by a.s. kline.

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One brown leaf, fallen

1 tree with shadow nov 9

One brown leaf, fallen
to the brown earth: its shadow
fell with it.

*  *  *

“Be not afraid of these trials which God may see fit to send upon you.

It is with the wind and storm of tribulation that God separates the true wheat from the chaff.

Always remember, therefore, that God comes to you in your sorrows, as really as in your joys.

He lays low, and He builds up.

You will find yourself far from perfection, if you do not find God in everything.”

-Miguel Molinos (1627-1696)

Returning from what other seas

seagulls landing

Returning from what other seas
Dost thou renew thy murmuring,
Weak Tide, and hast thou aught of these
To tell, the shores where float and cling
My love, my hope, my memories?

Say does my lady wake to note
The gold light into silver die?
Or do thy waves make lullaby,
While dreams of hers, like angels, float
Through star-sown spaces of the sky?

Ah, would such angels came to me
That dreams of mine might speak with hers,
Nor wake the slumber of the sea
With words as low as winds that be
Awake among the gossamers!

From the East to the West, by Andrew Lang

Lord, when our souls by care oppressed

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Lord, when our souls by care oppressed,
By sorrow grieved, or doubt distressed,
Peer through the darkness for the ray
That tells of dawn, and coming day:
Speak, and the Voice that bade the light
O’erthrow the reign of primal night,
Shall bring the sunshine that shall scare
Those prowling terrors in their lair.
O Christ our Lord, Thy power proclaim,
Our wills control, our passions tame;
Be near us, and unrest shall cease,
Amid the calm of heavenly peace.

***

from Hymns of the Early Church by John Brownlie
“How shall we climb the hill of God?”