Saturday, December 27, 2014

Ad-Darr: Pain’s Doorway


When you are broken and fall to your knees,
that is when you learn to pray—
not the supplication for more or better,
not the plea for heavens or salvation from hell,
but rather,
the simple surrender of all things material and passing.
We face the narrow open doorway then,
alone, afraid, hurt, and in despair
feeling how we are so much carved and trembling dust,
and choose to accept the invitation
to stand and walk through,
unencumbered
and murmuring
for the first time
an honest
Thy Will Be Done.


KBN

Find the entire poetry collection This Nurturing Awe:  Poems Inspired by the 99 Beautiful Names of God at

http://www.amazon.com/This-Nurturing-Awe-Inspired-Beautiful/dp/1507733429/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1429536332&sr=8-1&keywords=this+nurturing+awe+poems+inspired+by+the+99+beautiful+names+of+god

Friday, December 26, 2014

Al-Mani': Protective Resistance


I struggle with a tyrannical not-enoughness,
with facing the truth that
limits can be blessings,
delayed travel, a time of rest,
rattled plans, chance to evaluate more carefully.
The whole world whispers GO! to me,
connector that I am,
but the occasional “no” I allow through
is most often an invitation,
a gesture of goodwill from things
liminal and ambiguous.
I will tell you a secret:
in the end,
even the firm NO
inevitably unveils  
a
more
faith-filled
YES.


KBN

Find the entire poetry collection This Nurturing Awe:  Poems Inspired by the 99 Beautiful Names of God at

http://www.amazon.com/This-Nurturing-Awe-Inspired-Beautiful/dp/1507733429/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1429536332&sr=8-1&keywords=this+nurturing+awe+poems+inspired+by+the+99+beautiful+names+of+god

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Al-Mughni:The Larger Garden



We are the creators of boundaries,
drawing barriers in sand and air and red salt;
maybe that is why we so wished to fly,
to add another dimension to our delineated lives.

Together, the patchwork quilt of backyard fences,
the barbed wire of the pastures,
the grid of streets
all offer, continuously, to dissolve
into the more squiggly mental lines of
counties,
and states,
and nations.

Fly further, higher, and watch how our personal garden
grows,
expands
and
contracts
like breathing.
Nothing bows in neat lines and rows,
these circles of planets and stars and the pirouette of galaxies—
brilliant communal life,
bouncing, growing, composting,
swirling, stiffening, and
giving way
like the muscles of a lover
beneath your kind,
kneading hands.

O God, keep my garden large today,
and let me hear you walking there,
tending it all
attending to us all.


KBN

Find the entire poetry collection This Nurturing Awe:  Poems Inspired by the 99 Beautiful Names of God at

http://www.amazon.com/This-Nurturing-Awe-Inspired-Beautiful/dp/1507733429/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1429536332&sr=8-1&keywords=this+nurturing+awe+poems+inspired+by+the+99+beautiful+names+of+god

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Al-Ghani: Wisdom’s Boundaries


My parent’s yard is framed by trees,
a swaying boundary, drizzled with winter rain.
The gentle fog rises, where snow gives up color and form,
and dad’s perfect lawn-mower lines poke through the white
and disappear into leaves and branches and the bodies of dry bracken.

How do you frame a life?
in cement and roads,
in news shows and blaring music,
in stubborn view and arms crossed over your chest?

Come to the sun room with me
and see how trees always look up,
boughs teasing bird-wings as they swoop past
allowing wind and flight to move them,
and lend the ability to stay
to such inevitable and ephemeral things.

KBN

Find the entire poetry collection This Nurturing Awe:  Poems Inspired by the 99 Beautiful Names of God at

http://www.amazon.com/This-Nurturing-Awe-Inspired-Beautiful/dp/1507733429/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1429536332&sr=8-1&keywords=this+nurturing+awe+poems+inspired+by+the+99+beautiful+names+of+god


Monday, December 22, 2014

Al-Muqsit: Twin Pillars

The raven lifts from the rutted dirt road,

purple-black against the dusting of snow,

his wings curved and curled
as he navigates his landing
on the bouncing jack pine bough.
I drive by in my father’s muddied Blazer,
craning to see him as I pass.
How easily he manages such things—
groundlessness,
a lack of straight lines,
and delightful disregard for gravity
for heights
for propriety 
as he stares at me, passing.
I have only these twin pillars of legs,
And practical though they may be,
I sometimes long for roots
That can leave the ground and dance
With wind currents and other
Unexpected and undeserved
Loftinesses.
KBN

Find the entire poetry collection This Nurturing Awe:  Poems Inspired by the 99 Beautiful Names of God at

http://www.amazon.com/This-Nurturing-Awe-Inspired-Beautiful/dp/1507733429/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1429536332&sr=8-1&keywords=this+nurturing+awe+poems+inspired+by+the+99+beautiful+names+of+god



Sunday, December 21, 2014

Dhul-Jala-wal-Ikram: This Nurturing Awe


“Everything in the universe passes away,
But what remains is the face of the Sustainer,
full of power and beautiful abundance. (Sura 55:26-27)

Come out with me onto this snowy field,
the stubble of summer’s corn like vertebrae
the light dim and bluish.
And here,
lay down on the sleeping bag I have spread,
and
lay down, too, all the burdens you have carried,
the masks, the painful memories, the not-enoughness.
Now, lift your eyes,

There! where stars
are coalescing out of dust,
where photons slide through cold and dark
lightning without thunder;
where the whole face of this small galaxy spreads out,
and makes you feel, for one moment, quite insignificant.
And makes you feel, for one moment, larger than it all.
Because no matter how vast, your mind can still hold
the furthest nothingness,
maybe only
because
you
trust
God is there
playing
you
home,
humming in your ear the song of this nurturing awe,
and spelling it out in brilliance across the winter sky.


KBN

Find the entire poetry collection This Nurturing Awe:  Poems Inspired by the 99 Beautiful Names of God at

http://www.amazon.com/This-Nurturing-Awe-Inspired-Beautiful/dp/1507733429/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1429536332&sr=8-1&keywords=this+nurturing+awe+poems+inspired+by+the+99+beautiful+names+of+god

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Al-Muntaqim: Cleaning House


Bow a hundred times a day
to the dust bunnies beneath the couch,
to the pile of dishes
and the tangle of muddy shoes by the door.
Keep them before you,
so,
like the corners and shadows in your own mind,
you will be reminded
home is not so much a perfectly clean house,
but rather,
the smell of dinner in the oven;
the way the bird sweeps to the feeder and peers in;
the comfort of fingers knitting together,
one lover with another,
just because.
Even in the chaos of life happening,
find the presence of the One,
running like a drone tone beneath it all
and your house
in and out,
will be clean.


KBN

Find the entire poetry collection This Nurturing Awe:  Poems Inspired by the 99 Beautiful Names of God at

http://www.amazon.com/This-Nurturing-Awe-Inspired-Beautiful/dp/1507733429/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1429536332&sr=8-1&keywords=this+nurturing+awe+poems+inspired+by+the+99+beautiful+names+of+god

Friday, December 19, 2014

At-Tawwab: A Protected Stirring


 
Don’t be in such a hurry with this,
trying to patch and plaster
the small holes in your heart.
Shrug instead, into this ragged barn coat,
and walk through these two inches of warming snow.
Droplets are falling as the pines shed their white,
and the bird feeder swings small and quiet with breeze-breath.
Beneath the grass, all manner of seeds wait.
Covered in packed snow,
they stir restless in their sleep.
In your passing, whisper to them
“hush, hush,
Emmanuel.”
There is time,
and the slowing of time,
in this season of light,
and holes do mediate a
holy
melody
even in your aching heart.


KBN

Find the entire poetry collection This Nurturing Awe:  Poems Inspired by the 99 Beautiful Names of God at

http://www.amazon.com/This-Nurturing-Awe-Inspired-Beautiful/dp/1507733429/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1429536332&sr=8-1&keywords=this+nurturing+awe+poems+inspired+by+the+99+beautiful+names+of+god

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Al-Batin: Action Within


I watched the snow
wind-sidle sideways, curling
into the papery textures of lichen,
frosting it all silver.
Legs drawn beneath me,
head cocked to one side,
I laughed as a red-bellied woodpecker
swept into the green swing of the suet,
spinning it around.
“What are you doing?” my mother asked.
“Writing” I replied,
while a thousand lines a blink swirled by the window,
and a bird winked ink black eyes in amusement.


KBN

Find the entire poetry collection This Nurturing Awe:  Poems Inspired by the 99 Beautiful Names of God at

http://www.amazon.com/This-Nurturing-Awe-Inspired-Beautiful/dp/1507733429/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1429536332&sr=8-1&keywords=this+nurturing+awe+poems+inspired+by+the+99+beautiful+names+of+god

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Az-Zahir: Radiant Light


The dark wall of trunks
mark the boundary between garden
and miles of forest.
I can see the front line—
two fluffed out spruce trees,
the fair gashes of a lone aspen
and the long cream scars of an old oak
standing out against the darker pillars.
But beyond those immediate personalities
mystery shadows itself.

Then, 
in the later morning, 
the snow starts,
brilliant white filtering down,
then nudged sideways by the wind.
And lifting my head,
the forest illuminated from beneath
and within,
I think about how to carry light,
just this honestly
just this inevitably
just snowflakes of God shining
and smudging the boundary of our eyes.

KBN

Find the entire poetry collection This Nurturing Awe:  Poems Inspired by the 99 Beautiful Names of God at

http://www.amazon.com/This-Nurturing-Awe-Inspired-Beautiful/dp/1507733429/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1429536332&sr=8-1&keywords=this+nurturing+awe+poems+inspired+by+the+99+beautiful+names+of+god