Advent II: On Turning and Returning

Jan Richardson

Jan Richardson

Like burl on a lathe
we turn on God’s spindle
The sharp edge of the chisel
carving at the willful knot
of our self`direction
      Wherefore the resistance
      when his will is our peace?

Mercy is the a laser
peeling the scales of self
from those returning to God
What pain we may fear
is swallowed by grace
      Wherefore the hesitation
      when his coming is our joy?

“These very days of your transition are perhaps the time
when everything in you is working at him . . . The least
we can do is to make his becoming not more difficult for him
than the earth makes it for the spring when it wants to come.” ~ Rainer Maria Rilke


About Peter Notehelfer

I'm a retired people person who now finds the time to watch the little details of the world without worrying about being watched by anyone . . . I live on an Island north of Seattle with my wife named Ellen, a yellow dog named McGee, a yellow cat named Gatzby, and four fine chickens . . . I read fiction, bake bread, smoke salmon, and fish whenever the weather allows . . . Oh, and yes, I try to write a poem every day simply to avoid senility!
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7 Responses to Advent II: On Turning and Returning

  1. thefeatheredsleep says:

    Peter, I have never read one of your poems without holding my breath. You are an exquisite writer.


  2. Thank you for ‘the sharp edge of the chisel’…


  3. Cheryl Ruffing says:

    Wonderful metaphor, Peter.


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