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I really like formal, rhyming poetry, but sometimes only a ‘free form’ poem will do. I don’t like it when ‘free form’ becomes ‘no form’, but it’s good when you still exercise discipline and judgment in choosing your words.
I mean to convey the idea that the Spirit has held the perfect image of the Woman who would be the perfect vessel for the Trinity, for Christ. In a way, it really is a suffering to hold an idea in waiting for its fulfillment. So, not only Jesus was ‘wounded’, but the Holy Spirit also in this sense.
I always have the image of the vesica piscis in mind now, when I speak of the Spirit and the way God ‘voices’ His ideas, Himself into the world through real substance…real vocal cords correspond to the network of Holy Wisdom held ready for His speaking by the outstretched wings of the Spirit. Did you know the Hebrew word matrix also means womb? I love that!
Any time we speak of Mary, we are also speaking of the soul of any person, and I believe the Spirit also has sort of a wound, an imprint, a place in His heart for each of us…that His yearning for us is the song that draws us to Himself…that His speaking of our name (not just the name Mom gave us, but the unique, unrepeatable name that identifies us in His mind) is the ‘song’ we resonate with and follow all our lives, till we arrive to be with Him eternally.
I like Fr. Giussani’s idea that faith is planted in us like a word, that grows to become hope drawing us to our destiny. Finding the narrow path to our own destiny is like a dog following a scent, leading us to the fulfillment of God’s own idea of us and to heaven.
I like the way free form lets me make phrases that are readable in two different senses: Mary receives the Spirit by virtue of His suffering, but also, by virtue of her own sweet suffering gives Him being. He has known her since the dawn, and crafted their chaste love like a poem, but also, has known her since the dawn of other love – the love within the Trinity that precedes all other loves.
I love the three-line echo of the Divine Mercy chaplet, which closes in “Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One”. She is singular, too, but not capitalized, like the Divine pronoun. The three-fold reiteration is always a huge thing, signifying a magnitude of increase in dimension rather than mere rhetorical emphasis.
The word soughing is pronounced ‘suffing’, and I love it. If you read the poem aloud, or as you hear it in your mind, let the word interminable linger and feel all five syllables remind your being that the Word was, and is, and ever will be!
One more thing, though there are more things here than that: ‘proof against the lie’ has several layers of meaning. The ‘proof’ copy of a manuscript, or display ad, is the one we make to check for errors before we print more – the one that proves to us our layout, our spelling and all are perfect before we use it as a pattern for many more. When someone is ‘proof’ against something, it means they are guarded from it, like a waterproof raincoat. When something is ‘proof’, it is the evidence that proves the truth.
Okay, I’ll stop now, but I hope this helps you ‘see through’ my poem more fully, and that you’ll enjoy contemplating it.
The Wooing of Mary by the Holy Spirit
I have waited for you since the dawn,
holding out hope like scent to draw you
Ageless, I sought you through the ages,
the one who was to come
full-formed within me
as a wound,
or as a yearning emptiness.
Shaped sound you are
resounding from me,
wind soughing through bright unity
playing against a matrix
of interminable Word.
Thou resonant one,
Thou dear, capacious one,
Thou pure, expected one –
fruit of my longing,
proof against the lie.
In you, Love satisfied
is poetry made flesh.
Through all the gap
held open by my wings,
I taught your soul to know me
by my wounds.
So you receive me now
by virtue of sweet suffering
you suffer me to be,
and to be heard,
and borne, and loved,
and to be wed.
Beloved, I have known you since the dawn
of other love have crafted ours –
wax unconsumed remolded
for new light.
All the poems are now in one volume, and I’d love for you to have a copy! Click on the cover to buy it, and click here for the recordings of all the poems.