Friday, December 30, 2011

Let This Darkness Be a Bell Tower

Let This Darkness Be a Bell Tower

Quiet friend who has come so far,
feel how your breathing makes more space around you.
Let this darkness be a bell tower
and you the bell. As you ring,

what batters you becomes your strength.
Move back and forth into the change.
What is it like, such intensity of pain?
If the drink is bitter, turn yourself to wine.

In this uncontainable night,
be the mystery at the crossroads of your senses,
the meaning discovered there.

And if the world has ceased to hear you,
say to the silent earth: I flow.
To the rushing water, speak: I am.

- Rainer Maria Rilke

Leigh Kramer posted this poem over at her site, but I wanted to re-post it here, in the dark of the year. I love Rilke, but had not read or remembered this poem. I keep coming back to it this week.

Thursday, December 8, 2011


Remind us how to pray
for we have forgotten the lament,
the praise, the triumph, the song
of the lost and the redeemed
the in-between

Remind us to sing, for we have forgotten
all manner of things we never knew
The songs of rejoicing, of trial and tear
The songs of pain and birth and fire
The songs that ever arc beyond understanding
oh, we have forgotten more
than we ever knew before

Readers and prophets! Writers and teachers!
Singers and speakers and makers and reachers!
Hold out the hope you hold inside
the small, the wide, the deep hope inside
let it go; it will return.
The in-between, we still must learn.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Thursday Lyric: Too Many Miracles, Badly Drawn Boy

I wrote a post elsewhere a couple of years ago and included a few thoughts on the movie 'About a Boy', and its soundtrack which was entirely created by the British band Badly Drawn Boy.

Last year the band released a new single in December. I love to find Christmas-themed songs that explore the hopeful, powerful, patient ideas of Christmas in new words and ways, and this song is no exception. I put it on my Christmas mix last year, but I've been listening to it again recently and loving the story of hope and brokenness it tells.

Miracle rain makes snowballs falling slowly out of the sky
All you people wandering by
Make sure you don’t get one in the eye
There’s a new world forming out of the way
Future mothers born every day

Too many miracles happening here
It’s the same old story, different year
Oh I’m glad you were here
Been this way since the day I was born

I’m ready to be in love again
I know we could be in love

Photographing snowflakes lately I’m slowly losing my mind
There’s so many different kinds
Falling all the time
There’s a rainbow forming without any rain
A new dimension again

There’s too many miracles happening here
It’s the same old story, different year
Oh I’m glad you are here
Been this way since the day you were born

The age of romance is dead and gone
Maybe a chance I’m wrong

People falling out of love, I don’t know whose side you were on
Got to call these people along
And tell them where they’ve been going wrong
There’s no shame in changing and being alone
Just pull yourself one for the road

Hasn’t it been a strange old year
Well too many miracles happening here
I’m so glad you are here
Been this way since the day we were born

Are you ready to be in love again
I’m ready to be in love.