This Being Human


Spirit of Life, Source and Sustainer of all:

Now is the time of brilliant leaves against blue sky,
scudding clouds on the horizon,
shortening days.

As leaves fall, we become aware
of how temporary all things are,
and how beautiful.

We realize how small we are
in the face of the great mystery
that is life and death.

This being human is not easy:
being alive and knowing we have to die,
loving our world and knowing
its terrible pain.

How can we cope?

Perhaps if we breathe.
Perhaps if we lean a little
toward someone sitting next to us.

Perhaps if we think of a brilliant red maple leaf,
twirling down from the very top of a tall tree,
all the way to the ground.

Perhaps if we remember that this brief time
of being alive
is our one chance
to really love,
and our one chance
to heal what is wrong here.

Perhaps if we remember
that when we are finished,
we are gathered back into You–
like the leaf that lives
and then falls in a flash of scarlet
to become part of the whole again,
and nourish new life.

Blessed be.

Prayer at Summer’s End

Great spirit of life,
mystery beyond mystery:

The wheel of the year is turning
and the days begin to grow noticeably shorter.
The great waters begin to cool
and waves stir in the wind.
It is the end of one season of life
and the beginning of another.

What experiences did we store up
in our hearts this summer?
What new things did we learn?
What joys will we keep with us
as the earth moves in its orbit around the sun
and the days grow shorter still?

What flowers did we see?
What fruits did we taste?
Whose beloved faces did we kiss,
whose arms did we enter?

If there were many,
may we be thankful
for the abundance of our lives.

If there were none,
may we know that here, in this place,
love and joy abound.
May we have the courage to partake of them.

Blessed be.