Monday, April 5, 2010

Moccasin Flowers - April 4, 2010

All my life,

so far,

I have loved

more than one thing...

In spring

the moccasin flowers

reach for the crackling

lick of the sun

and burn down...

But all my life-so far-

I have loved best

how the flowers rise

and open, how

the pink lungs of their bodies

enter the fire of the world

and stand there shining

and willing-the one

thing they can do before

they shuffle forward

into the floor of darkness, they

become the trees

I rejoice in this poem, for today is Easter, Ostara, and our annual Flower Communion. The streets and woods around Gainesville are bursting with light green leaves and flowers poking out through the undergrowth, or exploding atop trees and bushes. Was there ever such a spring? I think every year I ask this - is it me, or is this spring more marvelous than the last? Rilke, in his Ninth Elegy, says, "Earth, my love, I will! My faith yields to you not needing one more of your springs, ach, already one spring is too much for my blood!" My blood stirs with the surprise of what was once barren, I swear, only a few days ago, is now polyphonic splendor. Oh that I was consciously and consistently willing to flower in beauty as intimate death keeps me company under the suns arcing dance. It seems in spring that I am more willing to accept the invitation of death and resurrection and that there is more joy than usual in change. It's as if I feel I am turning into the trees myself, one un noticed in a forest. In watching them with my unknown neighbors who share the same azalea bush, together we turn our hearts to awareness, acceptance, and peace.

What does spring mean to you?


  1. I, too enjoy the view of new light green growth on the trees and azaleas everywhere. The house I purchased has many varieties o azaleas planted along the side between my house and the next as well as by my front walk. They are beautiful.

    The burting of spring as accompanied by lots of pollen. My dark colored car was blanketed with yellow when I parked it outside last week. My system does not like that which will bring new seedlings, so I stay in for the beginning of spring. That is what is so neat about a house in the woods. I can see spring all around me without the unpleasant part.

  2. Lorakim - I am still absorbing the Sunday sermon and this posting, which are so superlative I really can't take it all in. So no response today!
    But as an aside, thank you for including Rilke, who is so central to me right now. I have been slowly working through his Book of Hours - I think I had slowed down because I didn't want to finish it! And now, thanks to you, I have the elegy to look forward to! Thank you!