Divine and Dusty: Embodied Prayers for Lent

Friday, March 5, 2021


Katie Snipes Lancaster

You shall have no other gods before me. Exodus 20:3

It is hard sometimes to drag ourselves
back to the love of morning
after we’ve lain in the dark crying out
O God, save us from the horror. . . .

God has saved the world one more day
even with its leaden burden of human evil;
we wake to birdsong.
And if sunlight’s gossamer lifts in its net
the weight of all that is solid,
our hearts, too, are lifted,
swung like laughing infants;

but on gray mornings,
all incident—our own hunger,
the dear tasks of continuance,
the footsteps before us in the earth’s
belovéd dust, leading the way—all,
is hard to love again
for we resent a summons
that disregards our sloth, and this
calls us, calls us.
—Denise Levertov, “The Love of Morning”

You alone are ours, O God.
Our burdens belong to you.
Without reservation we hand over our gray mornings
The weight of our hunger for justice, kindness, affection, yours.
Utterly yours.
So, as you summon us,
As you drag us, dusty, toward daylight,
Save us perfectly, entirely,
With birdsong and sunrise and the tender footsteps of dawn.

March 5, 2021

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