Welcome, Sister Death–dVerse Poetics

Image: St. Francis of Assisi Wikipedia--labeled for non-commercial reuse.

Image: St. Francis of Assisi
Wikipedia–labeled for non-commercial reuse.

Today, Bjorn is hosting dVerse Poetics and asks us to reflect on Peace. My mind went to death, perhaps because I’m currently reading Joan Didion’s “The Year of Magical Thinking.” From there, I thought of death’s I’ve witnessed over the years, many peaceful, some only after a struggle…then I remembered St. Francis of Assisi, who used to address death in the manner as I indicate in the title of this post. Francis is known for his love of animals, and for his Peace Prayer–a prayer almost universally recognized and open to persons of whatever spiritual bend. So, from there my peace poem was born. 

Welcome, Sister Death

I welcome Sister Death in autumn rains
or should She choose to call as snowflakes fall,
in spring, as early rains caress the earth
or summer’s heat, ‘neath fertile field’s smile.

She gently knocks upon my windowpane,
with branches painted crimson, orange and gold.
Such peacefulness I sense as leaves let go
surrendering to earth, unquestioning.

In dark times, deepest quiet covers earth,
reflecting light bestowed by its full moon.
My Sister whispers softly, “Come with Me,
behold the marvels that await you now.

The beckoning call of birdsong is Her voice,
as colors burst through earth in silent joy,
and flowering trees look to the morning sun
knowing that hope will follow their demise.

Beneath the wild excitement—summer’s gift,
small streams flow calmly to a river bed.
However incongruent Death may seem
I welcome all the promise She holds forth.

We hope to see you today at dVerse, with your own reflections on peace–so needed in our world today.

Nurture–dVerse Poetics

The ants rush toward sweetness. I take away the melon, but first I spill a little melon juice on the counter.
Mary Oliver
Sand Dabs, Eight


A drop of Buddhist grace seeps in my core.
I hesitate then spray to check those ants
but guilt ensues, weighs heavily in my soul,
Yet, should spider dare invade, I squash.

Last week I wept—a neighbor’s trees chopped down.
I wept for feathers scattered in our yard,
for eggs unhatched, abandoned in their nest,
for grazing cows and sheep, doomed to be slain.

And do we know for sure grain feels no pain?
That brainless lobsters know no suffering
when dropped in boiling pots for our delight?
Does life exist to feed on other lives?

But soon enough I, too, shall go away—
my life snuffed out much like a candle’s flame.
And so the cycle’s endless rhythm flows,
as well it must make room for seedling’s growth.

Photo: Teri Herzog

Photo: Teri Herzog

A second offering for Mary’s prompt at dVerse Poetics–to write poetry inspired by a quotation.