I want to tell you something. This morning
is bright after all the steady rain, and every iris,
peony, rose, opens its mouth, rejoicing. I want to say,
wake up, open your eyes, there’s a snow-covered road
ahead, a field of blankness, a sheet of paper, an empty screen.
Even the smallest insects are singing, vibrating their entire bodies,
tiny violins of longing and desire. We were made for song.
I can’t tell you what prayer is, but I can take the breath
of the meadow into my mouth, and I can release it for the leaves’
green need. I want to tell you your life is a blue coal, a slice
of orange in the mouth, cut hay in the nostrils. The cardinals’
red song dances in your blood. Look, every month the moon
blossoms into a peony, then shrinks to a sliver of garlic.
And then it blooms again.
I want to tell you something, so listen, Crooker tells us. This morning / is bright after all the steady rain – how true is that after so many downpours, the flowers open mouthed or bedraggled but nourished.
Wake up, open your eyes she admonishes us, pay attention to all the possibilities ahead, what is unwritten, unseen, yet to be experienced. The vibrating small insects, especially August’s crickets, tiny violins of longing and desire, singing us songs, singing us into song.
I can’t tell you what prayer is reminds me of Mary Oliver’s The Summer Day which also ponders how we open our hearts. But I can take the breath of the meadow into my mouth, releasing it for the leaves’ green need. Is that not accessible prayer and beauty enough?
She wants to tell us that our lives are a blue coal, a slice of orange, cut hay, the cardinal’s red song – sight, taste, smell, sound, all of our senses alive when we awake and feel deeply.
Finally she paints us the picture of how the moon waxes into flower, a showy peony, then shrinks to a sliver of garlic before blossoming again. And again each month, a continuous prayer of thanks for all that is.
Listen. The world has much to tell us.