Friday, July 20 , 2018, 5:39 pm | Fair 73º


Catholic Church of the Beatitudes: Two Poems to Ponder

All Purpose Saints

Almost everybody knows
Saint Anthony finds lost items
Important things like car or house keys
Even misplaced jewelry

Saint Joseph sells homes that
Have been on the market
For months
You probably would too
If your likeness was buried
Head first
In the back yard

Teresa of Avila helps folks
Converse familiarly with God
Bold as brass she rebuked her Creator
“If this is the way you treat your friends
No wonder you have so few”

Have you heard of Saint Expeditious
You’ll find his icons placed upside down
Like an hourglass
In hopes he’ll speed up the completion
Of onerous tasks

If only tradition had graced us with
Saint Procrastination
She would be canonized for the virtues of
Being captivated by a baby’s first steps
Watching ocean waves wash the shore
Or gazing at a flaming sunset
Maybe lying on the grass
Holding hands with her lover
As the full moon rose

Body and Soul

For better or worse
I’ve lived long enough
To know
My life has been molded
By distant events
I am a Catholic
My worldview painted
By this glorious and appalling
All too human Church

Bible thumping preachers
Are not for me
No TV Evangelism
Espousing health and prosperity
As the reward for positive thinking
I am a sinner
Familiar with damnation and redemption

It is the sensuality of rituals
That entrances me
The fragrant spiraling incense
The cleansing rain of sprinkled holy water
Sacred oil on the foreheads of newborns
And the dying
The cadence of litanies
Shared wine and bread
Gregorian chant
The kiss of peace

The tangible
Soul embodied people
Bound together by
The faith of Michelangelo, Dante
Mozart and Gaudi
Dorothy Day
Thomas Merton, Flannery O’Connor

Maybe God and imagination
Are alike
Is it a sensual response to beauty
That births our creativity
Allowing Divinity to caress us
Or is it the humor of the modern day saints
That lightens our profound loneliness
And in awe
Reminds us that we
Each and everyone
Are manifestations
Of Divine Creativity
Body and Soul

Genie Hoyne is a member of the Catholic Church of the Beatitudes, which celebrates Mass at 5:30 p.m. Saturdays at First Congregational Church of Santa Barbara, 2101 State St. Click here for more information, or call 805.252.4105. Click here for previous columns. The opinions expressed are those of the author.

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