Invitation to Poetry: Inner Compass

Invitation to Poetry

Poetry Party #17! I select an image and suggest a title and invite you to respond with your poems, words, reflections, quotes, song lyrics, etc. Leave them in the comments or email me and I’ll add them to the body of the post as they come in along with a link back to your blog if you have one (not required to participate!) I’ll add your contributions all week and then I will draw a name at random on Saturday morning from everyone who participates and will send the winner their choice of zine.

When I was in Maine I was struck by all of the weathervanes on top of buildings, something you don’t see as much in other parts of the country.  I loved the image of finding the direction the Spirit is blowing within you.  What would an interior weathervane or compass look like?  Feel free to take your poem in any direction you feel moved, focus on one image or all of them.

Feel free to post any of the images and invitation on your blog and encourage others to come join the party!




to find north
one must know where south is
to find south
one must be willing to dive
to navigate
not by sight
but by sound
to discern
not by fact
but by mystery
dive ~ dive deep
for therein lies the way
of the spirit

-Kel at the X facta


 Hashimoto Takako (1899-1963)
        in the sweltering sky
        a ladder — someone carries it
        to the deep shade
        a flash of lightning
        coming from the north, I look
        to the north
(tr. by Makoto Ueda, submitted by kigen and see kigen’s great photo of a crow looking north)


I spin the circle round,
pointing out, away.
I dance in the wind,
I glow in the sun,
I creak in the rain.

Do you need me
to show you the way?
What will you do
when I spin back
and around again?

-Tess at Anchors and Masts


Wind and Spirit, by Chris Rice

I hear a sound and turn to see a new direction on that rusty weathervane
Suddenly the dead brown leaves are stirred to scratch their circle dances down the lane
And now the sturdy oaks start clappin’ with the last few stubborn leaves that won’t
let go
I can hear Old Glory snappin’ and her tattered rope now clangin’ against the pole
And my breath is snatched away
And a tear comes to my eye
Feels like somethin’s on the way so I look up to the sky, I look up to the sky and…

From the corners of creation
Comes the Father’s holy breath
Ridin’ on a storm with tender fierceness
Stirring my soul to holiness
Stirring my soul to holiness

I see the lifeless dust now resurrected, swirling up against my window pane
And carried ‘cross the distance comes the long awaited fragrances of earth and rain
And out across the amber field the slender grasses bend and bow and kiss the ground
And in them I see the beauty of the soul’s who let the Spirit lay them down
And it takes my breath away
And a tear comes to my eye
Feels like somethin’s on the way, so I look up to the sky, I look up to the sky

From the corners of creation
Comes the Father’s holy breath
Ridin’ on a storm with tender fierceness
Stirring my soul to holiness
Stirring my soul to holiness

And like a mighty wind blows with a force I cannot see
I will open wide my wings, I will open wide my wings
I will open wide my wings and let the Spirit carry me
From the corners of creation
Comes the Father’s holy breath
Ridin’ on a storm with tender fierceness
Stirring my soul to holiness
Stirring my soul to holiness

Copyright Clumsy Fly Music (ASCAP)

(submitted by Anne Sims)


Inner Compass

The narwhal sang; myth
to the salt drugged ears
of lonely men, lost
in the blue below, the blue
above, the white cold crust
of wind blown fear.
I still hear, the echoing
sound of waves, and voices
from deep within,
stones and sea, and curling horn
ancient as a race once born
in dreams. The needle point
of iron truth swings round
a slow and steady guide,
unbothered by the shifting tide
or wind tossed waves
that might upset, or light
the cold washed lamp of fear
but for that tiny grain, within.
Divine; the spark, a voice
that sings my name
in the voice of narwhal calling,
calling, to the wind.

-Tandaina at Snow on Roses


On the old farm
a young poet found the Way,
facing the wind . . .
now that sense of direction
blows back into her soul again.



“Spinning and Still”





















now north,






it’s exhausting


other days




so, which way am i to go?

just where am i headed?

oh, how i long for a spring breeze to gently blow,

with a clear invitation,

“Come, let’s go this way…”

-Cathleen at Back Road Journey


Turn around.
Go forward.
Stand still.
Choose now.
Wake up.
Speak up.
Keep quiet.

It’s not clear
what I must do
until the Spirit
finds me ready
for anything.

-Theresa Walker



Wind in my face brings solace
to my soul, as I stand
at the portal to a sacred world.
Ready to journey upward
where blood red sunsets
signal the desires
of my heart to fly.

Birds on wing take final spins
before indigo darkness
sets them to rest.
Their soaring flights
ignite my imagination
giving birth to windswept dreams.

A weathervane detects
my heart’s movements
but cannot reveal
the depth of my emotion,
just as a conductor leads
an orchestra, yet he never stirs
our soul like a single,
haunting oboe.

A mapless journey reveals a new path,
so I move where I am led,
trusting my heart to take me
to the place where I can test
my wings against the wind,
always mindful of
the sacred compass.

-Rich at Pilgrim Path


The weathervane stands still.

The Holy Spirit is waiting, 

waiting for a prayer.

-Martha Louise Harkness


Compass Stilled

He would be my father’s generation
Chalky snot, just inside
The zipper of his coat,
And a milky river that runs
A crevasse, cheek to chin.
I fumble for my hanky
And know he’s not dad
So that sticky river
Will stay his.
The stubble on his face
Is an aerial map
Of the Tillamook Burn;
Growth, clearing, reforestation.
Outwardly he has a walker
Making his life a push
And invading space.

He returns
More often then Jesus after Resurrection
At his stop on thirty-fifth across from
the library.
He doesn’t ask me to touch
Or  believe.
His inner compass has no captain.

-Tom Delmore at Crow’s Perch


called by

the wind

i set out for

the deep,


where she

will take me

and how far..

such is the


of a call

-Sally Coleman at Eternal Echoes


No weathervanes

in Minnesota.

Maybe I better go

to Maine.

Better yet,

I will snuggle inside

and seek direction

from my Home-ly Mother.

-Suz Reaney


winds of change where do you begin?
is it a whisper in our ear or
the roar of a God whose belly fills deep
upon the ocean?

-Kayce Hughlett at lucy creates


In a seafaring town on the Atlantic Ocean coast, clapboard dwellings painted white and silvering shake shingles equally prevail. Tides, sand, rocks and dune grass being common concerns, so is the weather. You need to know where the winds are blowing, cuz what you don’t know you can’t say “yes” to and you certainly cannot ever intentionally change anything you don’t know nothing about. Discerning breezes, spirited winds and directions in general is where weathervanes can be very handy, in addition to symbolizing past glories of way bygone whaling times. But regarding change, when I commented to my grandmother how raw and unfinished freshly new shingles seem to be, standing out in a too conspicuous way like a person of any age whose manners haven’t been put on quite right politely, Nana pointed out to me how quickly, how naturally with no effort on their part the shingles just happen to acquire a shimmering patina of silver. You might even call it graceful! In spite of that fact, still I’m wondering if I wouldn’t rather be brazenly conspicuous and freshly spoken, because that’s how I’ve naturally become as winds and rains have breezed through my life and world and days. That’s how my manner has become, polite or not much so, and to learn where the wind of the Spirit currently blows, Bob Dylan has words for what’s going to be happening soon; you can read it all on his site at When the Ship Comes In. Here’s a sample:

Oh the time will come up
When the winds will stop
And the breeze will cease to be breathin’.
Like the stillness in the wind
‘Fore the hurricane begins,
The hour when the ship comes in.

Oh the seas will split
And the ship will hit
And the sands on the shoreline will be shaking.
Then the tide will sound
And the wind will pound
And the morning will be breaking.

Oh the fishes will laugh
As they swim out of the path
And the seagulls they’ll be smiling.
And the rocks on the sand
Will proudly stand,
The hour that the ship comes in.

And the words that are used
For to get the ship confused
Will not be understood as they’re spoken.
For the chains of the sea
Will have busted in the night
And will be buried at the bottom of the ocean.
© 1963; renewed 1991 Special Rider Music

-Leah at This Far by Faith


Inner Compass

I turn not
because you push me
but because I want to move
and face the change.
I turn not
because you force me
but because it is time to embrace
new winds,
new power.
I turn.
And turn back.
And the Center?
I pivot on Christ.

-Deb Vaughn at An Unfinished Symphony



What is that, coming out of the blue,
to point me in a new direction?

How can something so rigid take
me to a flowing place of unknowing?

Why would I pay attention to
the capricious dance of an inanimate being?

My fixed mark comes out of a dark place
with no turning, a still light burning.

I must turn to see it, and when I do
the gaze meets me in mystery.

No place but here, no time but now,
no one but me and Thou.

Christine Eleanor Merritt


-Christine Valters Paintner @ Abbey of the Arts

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