Sent: Tue, May 18, 2010 11:50:09 PM
Subject: [FirstChurch Mailing List] Rest and Bread, the poetry of Mary Oliver: "Thirst"
"Oh Lord, how shining and festive is your gift to us, if we only look, and see!"*
This week at Rest and Bread, we'll begin exploring the poetry of Mary Oliver, who gives voice to the deep connection between Spirit and this precious earth. We'll reflect on our thirst for God and quench that thirst in prayer and communion.
We begin our service at today (Wednesday) 6:30, with music for meditation at 6:15. Won't you join us?
* from "Look and See", in _Why I Wake Early_, by Mary Oliver.
Our Call to Worship combined lines from "Look and See" and from "One."
From "One" (emphasis mine):
How blue is the sea, how blue is the sky,Our Sacred Text was "Thirst":
how blue and tiny and redeemable everything is, even you,
even your eyes, even your imagination.
Another morning and I wake with thirst for the goodness I do not have. I walk out to the pond and all the way God has given us such beautiful lessons. Oh Lord, I was never a quick scholar but sulked and hunched over my books past the hour and the bell; grant me, in your mercy, a little more time. Love for the earth and love for you are having such a long conversation in my heart. Who knows what will finally happen or where I will be sent, yet already I have given a great many things away, expecting to be told to pack nothing, except the prayers which, with this thirst, I am slowly learning.Jeff V. read the poem and Keith shared a Reflection and then Jeff V. read it again and we were invited to share out reflections. Both time he read the poem I was struck by the line "already I have given a great many things away, expecting to be told to pack nothing." Both times I heard it, I expected the line to continue on to say that though she expected to be told to pack nothing, that was a false expectation. I don't know where I'm getting that from, because I don't think it's in the authorial intent at all (though of course we support subversive readings of the subtext :) ) and I do in fact support the idea of learning to let go (hi, this has sort of turned into my theme this year).
After service, Keith was talking about revising the Communion liturgy to include some stuff from the Iona community, and I asked if I could be involved in that conversation and he said sure. He asked if I had any changes I particularly wanted to make, and I said I didn't think I had any strong opinions about it.
FCS-Ian said, "Elizabeth, did I just hear you say you don't have strong opinions? I don't believe you."