Tuesday, December 4, 2012

"Listen to the stone of the wall."

Be still
Listen to the stones of the wall.
Be silent, they try
To speak your

to the living walls.
Who are you?
Are you? Whose
Silence are you?

Who (be quiet)
Are you (as these stones
Are quiet).  Do not
Think of what you are
Still less of 
What you may one day be.
Be what you are (but who?) be
The unthinkable one
You do not know.

O be still, while
You are still alive,
And all things live around you
Speaking (I do not hear)
To your own being,
Speaking by the Unknown
That is in you and in themselves.

"I will try, like them
To be my own silence:
And this is difficult.  Tho whole
World is secretly on fire.  The stones
Burn, even the stones
They burn me. How can a man be still or
Listen to all things burning?  How can he dare
To sit with them when
All their silence
Is on fire?

- Thomas Merton, The Collected Poems of Thomas Merton, pp. 280-281

A thanks to Beth at http://fatherlouie.blogspot.com for this today.  This is one my favorites poems by Merton.  I really needed the pause that reading this poem gave me this morning.  I have been in a holiday hustle, lately.  Packages to send, clients to see, and Etsy work.  I have been losing track of what I love about this season most...quiet.  During my morning walk I took the quiet time to enjoy the stone walls around this land...and ...listen...

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