I LOVE this poem, "THE WORLD I LIVE IN," by Mary Oliver Link
I have refused to live
locked in the orderly house of
reasons and proofs.
The world I live in and believe in
is wider than that. And anyway,
what’s wrong with Maybe?
You wouldn’t believe what once or
twice I have seen. I’ll just
tell you this:
only if there are angels in your head will you
ever, possibly, see one.
I’ve been thinking about angels this Christmastide. (Not the ones on Hallmark cards, Valentine merchandise, or even those created by Michelangelo!) I see the faces of longtime friends, (like Shannon, who texted me this poem). I see the faces of a few strangers who entered my life just when I needed a word of hope from the Divine. I see the faces of doctors and nurses who cared deeply about the bodies of those I love. I see the faces of dear souls who once had a place on this planet, but who “exist” no more—yet they make “appearances when I need them most”. I see the faces of my once babies—two of whom are bigger than I am; I hold them in my heart every moment.
I see the faces of you—Westminster.
In our Watch for the Light study, we read the words of St John Chrysostom: “Truly wonderous is the nativity--a heavenly way of life has been implanted on the earth, angels communicate with humans without fear, and we now hold speech with angels”. As we focus on watching and looking for the light in 2024, may we see and hold speech with angels.
As a little girl, I created a complex and elaborate imaginary world—I was from China; I had two sisters and three daughters. For reasons unbeknownst to my adult brain—my name, in my imaginary world, was Angelwood. I give thanks for Angelwood in my head. (If you think that is an unusual name, you should have met my aunt—Cookie Dimestore!). I lived in my imaginary world. A lot. (It was much more peaceful than my real world.) Mary Oliver rightly asks, “what’s wrong with Maybe”? I pray for “angels in my head” in 2024. I pray for angels in your head too.
Peace of Christ in this new year.
And much love,