Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Phoebe's Sunset Sentimentality

The events of this poem happened a few months ago, but I finally wrote it.  

Phoebe’s Sunset Sentimentality
By Felice Austin

I found out later
That she was on the roof with Lily
While we were inside watching
The sunset through the beach house windows
As it sailed on its canoe, off the edge of the world
Turning the water gold
The sky a veil of orange.

If you watch a sunset sitting down,
And then stand up, you can watch it again.
I demonstrated for our guests, standing on a chair.
Later, she told me about the view from the roof.

Very young children rarely notice sunsets.
Why would they,
When everything is new?
Why would it be any more bewitching
Or beautiful than a bird flying,
Or a boy riding by on a skateboard,
Or the mole on your belly?  

Now, she is six, my daughter,
Who is named after the sun.
She touches her heart as she speaks
“Mom. It was so beautiful.”

And I feel sorrow,
Like she is describing her own death.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013


The last week or so I have been really struggling with getting up early to do my regular sadhana (meditation) practice. I sat up in bed one morning as I was having a conversation with myself about it. Never have a conversataion with yourself, is something I always tell students. Just get up. But having a conversation I was, when in the middle of my thoughts, I heard a quiet voice in my mind and heart that said, "If you knew Christ was going to be there to meet you, would you get up?"

Well. Yes. That changed my perspective. I would shower put on something nice. I realized that if I am going to see Christ, it will probably be in the quiet morning hours when I am alone communing with Him. Also, like I read this week in Lorenzo Snow's experience (Chapter 3 of the new manual), it is often when we don't feel like it, but do it anyway, that we get the outpouring we have been seeking.

This poem also landed in my possession this week and hit me right in the core. Thought I would share it as poetry always says so much more than a blog post.

by Dorianne Laux

Someone spoke to me last night,
told me the truth. Just a few words,
but I recognized it.
I knew I should make myself get up,
write it down, but it was late,
and I was exhausted from working
all day in the garden, moving rocks.
Now, I remember only the flavor--
not like food, sweet or sharp.
More like a fine powder, like dust.
And I wasn't elated or frightened,
but simply rapt, aware.
That's how it is sometimes --
God comes to your window,
all bright light and black wings,
and you're just too tired to open it