Quote of the day, 9 January: Jessica Powers

To Live with the Spirit

To live with the Spirit of God is to be a listener.
It is to keep the vigil of mystery,
earthless and still.
One leans to catch the stirring of the Spirit,
strange as the wind’s will.

The soul that walks where the wind of the Spirit blows
turns like a wandering weather-vane toward love.
It may lament like Job or Jeremiah,
echo the wounded hart, the mateless dove.
It may rejoice in spaciousness of meadow
that emulates the freedom of the sky.
Always it walks in waylessness, unknowing;
It has cast down forever from its hand
the compass of the whither and the why.

To live with the Spirit of God is to be a lover.
It is becoming love, and like to Him
toward Whom we strain with metaphors of creatures:
fire-sweep and water-rush and the wind’s whim.
The soul is all activity, all silence;
and though it surges Godward to its goal,
it holds, as moving earth holds sleeping noonday,
the peace that is the listening of the soul.

Sr. Miriam of the Holy Spirit, O.C.D.
(Jessica Powers)

To Live with the Spirit (1949; 1984)

The Baptism of Christ
Paris Bordone (Italian, 1500–1571)
Oil on canvas, ca. 1535/1540
National Gallery of Art, Washington DC
(Public domain)

Powers, J 1999, The Selected Poetry of Jessica Powers, ICS Publications, Washington DC.

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