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Invitation to Poetry: Hospitality

Welcome to the Abbey’s 61st Poetry Party!

I select an image and suggest a theme/title and invite you to respond with your own poem. Scroll down and add it in the comments section below. Feel free to take your poem in any direction and then post the image and invitation on your blog (if you have one), Facebook, or Twitter, and encourage others to come join the party!  (If you repost the photo, please make sure to include the credit link below it and link back to this post inviting others to join us).

Each month we have a new theme and for October it is hospitality, drawn from the second principle of the Monk Manifesto: “I commit to radical acts of hospitality by welcoming the stranger both without and within. I recognize that when I make space inside my heart for the unclaimed parts of myself, I cultivate compassion and the ability to accept those places in others.”

Write a poem about this commitment and desire.

What is it that you are called to welcome within?

What are the challenging voices knocking on your inner (and outer) door?

What happens when you begin a conversation willing to be changed by what you hear?

Photo Credit: Steven Elliott (please use this credit if you repost this invitation on your blog and link back to the Abbey as well – thank you!)

Share your poem below in the comments with the Abbey community.

On Sunday, October 19th, I will select one name at random from the submissions and the winner will receive a space in my upcoming online retreat – Honoring Saints and Ancestors: Peering through the Veil

October’s theme is Hospitality (Abbey Resources):

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29 Responses

  1. I am part of the circle, the known and loving circle
    How beautiful it is
    I come for refreshment, to share in song, to play at ease.
    A sudden commotion,
    An upheaval.
    A new voice, a different language, a wind at the door!
    You knock…
    ‘Please. open the door, make room for me too!’
    My heart is broken open
    And I must listen now.
    The circle widens, water spills,
    And golden light flows in.

    Light and shadow, to and fro,
    The dance is all.

  2. Why is it that the people I love most
    are the hardest to be with?
    I can cherish their presence in my life
    and yet want to get away from them
    and take my space
    longing for privacy and quiet
    but living with loneliness & unspoken pain
    Such an odd combination
    of affection & annoyance
    warmth and crankiness
    joy and anguish
    togetherness and crowdedness
    Will we ever get it right?
    So much fear to lose them
    so much desire to escape them
    God we are a weird bunch…..

    Even the various characters within me
    dance this stumbling lack of harmony
    inhospitable bickering inner selves
    friendly warrior cheering parts
    oh so wondrous whispers of gentle divinity
    mixed with crabby skeptic me
    maybe I can take this inner family
    to a food fight party
    so they can celebrate and frustrate
    with wild abandon
    and come out laughing with relief
    at the jolly mess of love……

  3. Sensing something
    Peering through a dark window
    Something, something,…..or someone
    I turn…then, hear a knock
    Waiting for the light–in the light I can greet
    and may … even welcome fear.
    In silence, I find the cold darkness remains
    Then the knock-the knock-the knock

    My prayer, my anger, my fear, my loneliness
    paralyze me inside…outside. Forsaken…

    Only hospitality…opening…welcoming the knocking
    I discover it is “the light” in the darkness

  4. You approach and I wonder inside
    Are you like me, or are you not?
    But then I realize
    It doesn’t really matter,
    We’re all one.