Wildness + Poplar Leaves (Special Guest: Kat Denton)

Photo by  Nathan Anderson  on  Unsplash

Kat Denton, Ministry Assistant for Youth and Children's Ministry, reflects on her love of nature and how God is revealed through the natural world. The two poems she shares today describe a kind of marveling and enjoyment in what Kat calls "outdoor cathedrals."

Rev. Tommy Williams affirms, "You could say creation was the first cathedral, right? Before anything else was built."

by David Bailey

You're there beside me when I wake--
window full of redwoods, otherworldly joy
of a Swainson's thrush singing.

It's enough to sit on the deck
with a mug of tea, breathing the fern-breath
warmth of the valley, ridge after ridge
from the mist unfolding. The view is a book
I open for one word, and it's enough
to feel close to everything.

But you know me better than I do. When you see
I'd stay here all morning, you whisper the name
of a trail I've heard of, and draw me out of my dreaming.

Where the wind gets loud on the mountain's
ocean side, I'd turn back, unknowing, but you pull me on
around the last bends to where the path arrives
at the beginning of the world--grassy cliffs breaking off
to jade-green ocean, waves bursting
on rough black rocks, pools of purple starfish,
green anemones. Gold chiaroscuro
of the late sun through sheets of rain
hangs in the air down the coast.

A wild symmetry aches back in me
from places I don't call myself, and I want to stay here
until I'm ragged and wind-slanted
as these bishop pines, lit up with orange lichens, draped
with Old Man's Beard. I want to stay until
I know you from inside, the way quail and coyotes
know you, and I've found that wildness
turning all of it into song
for no one's praise.

The whole day hangs in me
like a vision, strenuously beautiful.
I want this to be enough, but I know
I must make from it actual things, I must
unfold that landscape inside of me
in order to live there, in order to love
what you've shown me.

Poplar Leaves
by Line Gauthier

wind rustling
poplar leaves
bells for Sunday mass