Blessings of Poetry

During this time of physical isolation, it’s easy for us all to feel lonely, frustrated, fearful and at times anxious. In such times, poetry, for example, can help us re-focus, re-centre and bring our minds back into a state of wonder and joy.

These words from the late Irish poet and expert on Celtic Spirituality, John O’Donohue (1956 – 2008), may help ease your mind and refocus on gratitude. In our Year 10 Philosophy and Religious Studies course, we read some of O’Donohue work on guilt, shame and forgiveness.

This small selection of quotes is taken from O’Donohue’s wonderful book, Benedictus: A Book of Blessings, which I highly recommend:

“May I live this day
compassionate of heart,                    
clear in word,
gracious in awareness,
courageous in thought,
generous in love.”

“May you experience each day as a sacred gift woven around the heart of wonder.”

“May dawn find you awake and alert,
approaching your new day with dreams, possibilities, and promises;
May evening find you gracious and fulfilled;
May you go into the night blessed, sheltered and protected;
May your soul calm, console and renew you.”

“May the nourishment of the earth be yours,
May the clarity of light be yours,
May the fluency of the ocean be yours,
May the protection of the ancestors be yours.

And so may a slow
Wind work these words
Of love around you,
An invisible cloak
To mind your life.”

If you are interested in reading more of O’Donohue’s work or listen to his readings, please visit his website here.

Rev’d Hans Christiansen
Senior Chaplain