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Simon Monahan Nov 2018
A heart, even a human heart,
And yet much more! A blessing key
Which unlocks all the larger part
Of creation's secret, to be
Fathomed in divinest thoughts, where
Love spoke a single Word which could
Not be writ across one sky, there
Being too small for one who would
Speak galaxies of affection,
Spiralling lazily, with ease
Breathing out (O sweet reflection!)
How the Beloved does so please
The unravelling speaker's heart,
Bright orange nebulae signing
Cosmic sighs of love which betray
Deep fondness, and no small pining
For that sweet soul which holds such sway
While comets with hot flashing tails
Remind how fleeting is matter,
Finitude which entirely pales
Before love's endurance. Clatter
Of crashing asteroids beats loud
The steady pulse in silent space
Of devotion's heartbeat, ne'er proud,
Always humbly ready to place
Itself at the disposal of
Her, and her fair name, love of God
Having joined him to her, his dove,
Beside her e'er his path to trod.
And for lightyears of empty black
Void, the silence is unbroken
For love goes beyond the poor track
Of mere words, largely unspoken,
Of course - for even the bright sun
Burns passionately above cloud
And horizon all mute, for one
Who needs not great clamour and loud
Cries to know that her poor lover's
Attention is all caught up in
Her eyes, that beauty which covers
Her whole person, which he would win
Rather by the constellations’
Subtle grandeur than by any
Of the offal of the nations
All dearly sought by so many
(The trappings of riches and fame)
Yet counted all as dust by her
Whose sweet self and whose most fair name
His soul loves. Supernova blur
Smudges the blinking telescopes
Startled by refulgent glory
Of stars which exceed all the hopes
And dreams of poor mortal story,
Fables myriad each like mist
Are dispelled by the diction true
And truly uttered, the whole list
Of fairy tales by a great new
Reality shown inferior
And usurped, as the things of old
Are by these matters interior
Contrasted; proven less well told
Than love’s murmuring, that sweet breath
Of solar wind across the soul’s
Horizon, and the world's. Grave death,
Blistering hell, and those foul coals
Which stoke the infernal fires are
Not enough to overcome it,
The light of its hope shining far,
By which the dark abyss is lit
And made shallow, all things swallowed
By patient seas of affection,
And sadnesses we once wallowed
In escaping our detection,
As we are cast adrift on this
Placid sea. From a stately ship
Above your lover calls, to bliss
Inviting you - that you may strip
Your heart of pain’s devices, set
Sail for past the sunset's glow, while
He takes, if only you will let
Him, your cares away, your sweet smile
The whole repayment expected.
No mere bridge joins our hearts, my love,
But the Cross, which sees connected
Our green earth and heaven above,
As well as our destinies, God's
Call joining in one location
Our twisting paths, against all odds,
Fate through the grace of vocation
Made sweet by His divine favor.
A second heartbeat where once one
Sounded alone now beats, savor
Recognizable in hard-won
Harmonious sound, for no such
Unity is achieved, nor two
Made one, save by labors, by much
Work attentively done; but you,
Of course, darling, serve as reason
Enough to justify hardships
Beyond these, whether in season
Or out your presence amidships
Making every voyage fairer
Than the last, even through the storms,
Instilling courage ‘gainst terror
And all dread, for the lovely forms
Which your love gently expressed takes
Are balm and tonic against all
Ills, honey for the soul which makes
One unafraid that he should fall,
Knowing, as he does, that you will
Be there to succor every woe -
He can his heart’s contents all spill,
And safely, for you love him so.
For Mary Margaret
Simon Monahan Sep 2018
Fitted snug o’er the ageless trunk, ever-young beneath time’s rings,
Pitted bark a woody blanket, wrapt round the stalk of sylvan slumber,
Guarding ‘gainst the bitter cold following the dusk towards autumn’s end,
While, head rested upon moonlight’s tender pillow, the tree begins to dream.

Nightmares of axes and termites and rot,
Memories of thirst-slaking rains, rich earth, and warm sunbeams,
Fantasies of laughing fruit and dancing roots and singing soil,
As only a tree could ever dream.

Nostalgia for the shadows of elder trees once gone before,
Visions of aurorae, sun showers, and shooting stars,
Hope of lasting harmony, unassailable arboreal peace,
As only a tree could ever dream.
The first line is taken from another poem of mine, "Lauds Arboreal":
Simon Monahan Apr 2018
An Abraham, who, looking far
Above upon a distant star
Remembers his promised reward
And knows his sighs are not ignored

An Israel, with head held high
Limping upon a wounded thigh
Remembers through both thick and thin
The wrestling match God let him win

A Prophet, burning with the word
Which on Emmaus road he heard
Remembers standing, listening, still
Aware of an Absolute will

An Alter Christus, anointed
Faithful to his task appointed
Remembers with generous heart
The One who loved him from the start

And children of this Father dear
Whether they are yet far or near
Remember him, and grateful, pray:
Ad Multos Annos, every day
For Father Michael, in thanksgiving for 30 years of priesthood

Also, been away awhile, got some catching up to do
Simon Monahan Mar 2018
Weathered of snows and rains and smokes and fires,
Veteran of storms and gales and floods and squalls,
Seasoned of winters and summers and frosts and thaws,
The tired tree, unflagging, rests not.

Stripped of twigs, bark, and even limbs to dry for fueling men’s fires,
Leaves inhaled by ants and the young of every moth and butterfly,
Sweet sap, sylvan life’s blood, drained to gild the breakfast plate,
The giving tree, robbed, remains no less generous.

Gnawed alive by armies of tunneling insects in their divisions,
Bark scored and gouged with signs and graffiti and lover’s initials,
The heart of the forest smiles, the woodland holds no grudges,
The dying tree, patient and immortal, grows on.
The first line is taken from another poem of mine, "Lauds Arboreal":
Simon Monahan Mar 2018
Constant cloak accented of moss and vine and bubbles of fungus,
Adorned lavishly with baubles of shining dew and pearly snails,
Bronze berries refracting rosy light from a warm, pink sky,
Surely woodland pageantry is best observed at Dawn.

Or helmeted with blankets of snow, bristling with spears of ice,
Perhaps the queenly winter tree is the paragon of comeliness;
Or that softly dripping fountain, shortly after summer rain,
Is there a fairer fragrance than the perfume of pine and petrichor?

Oh! Can men with minds of concrete, spirits of styrofoam and steel,
Remain long disenchanted, cold, in spite of savage sylvan beauty?
Cannot the blooming orchard, decked with petals and busy with bees,
Suffice to empty the heart of gravel and flood the soul with verse?
The first line is taken from another poem of mine, "Lauds Arboreal":
Simon Monahan Mar 2018
Padded with armor layered in sheaves and shingles,
Birds and squirrels from their nests taking turns at the watch,
The forest is a war camp, trunks trained and battle-ready,
Each tree a man-of-war prepared to stand the test of time.

Havoc! Storm-born gods smite the wood from behind the rainclouds’ clamor,
Rivers of lightning indiscriminate scourge the arboreal assembly,
Ravaging the haughty hawthorn and the arrogant alder,
The angry glow of fires countless rages on and on.

Yet when calm again prevails, amidst the muddy charcoal stumps,
Before the smoke is finished seething, fire-**** irascible shoots forth,
For the forest knows no maps, has no borders to be redrawn,
Ever rebuilding, ever unyielding, bastions of bark that shan’t admit defeat.
The first line is taken from another poem of mine, "Lauds Arboreal":
Simon Monahan Mar 2018
With every breeze rattling branches scratch out a shout,
Gusts of cloud’s breath arouse the lumbering orchestra,
Wind is the baton in the invisible conductor’s hand,
Choirs of leaves rub out hymns composed of rustling joy.

T’was the woodlands softly chanted the new-born earth’s first song,
The sighs of sylvan movement hum and thrum, scrape and scruff,
Harmonizing with the gargling river’s current chorus,
Nature’s opera, now whispering, now roaring, ever most alive.

Wind whistling through mountain passes, another fair refrain,
While songbirds supplement with their master melodies,
A lullaby to rock sleepless, anxious men to reverent rest,
To teach consistent music opposite their chaotic, chronic noise.
The first line is taken from another poem of mine, "Lauds Arboreal":
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