The Fox in the Snow by Belle and Sebastian
nothing protects you
from open sky
and beckoning grave:
teach us to leave behind
the fear that kills what is different,
our love for what is dead and safe;
may we set our face like you
to find our true home,
our unexpected city of peace,
your fearless life:
by Leonardo Sinisgalli
translated by Jamie McKendrick
He’s an old church dog
who loafs under the altar.
He’s lost his sense of smell, his fangs
are loose and he’s given up
scratching himself with his muzzle.
Even cats scare him
but he’s here at the requiem mass
for my mother’s bones.
His head stretched out between his paws,
he’s stuck out his tongue: suddenly
he swallows a big fly that was bothering him.
From March 1979
by Tomas Tranströmer
translated by Robin Fulton
I make my way to the snow-covered island.
The untamed has no words.
The unwritten pages spread out on every side!
I come upon the tracks of deer in the snow.
Language but no words.
As the time approached when Jesus was to be taken up into heaven, he determined to go to Jerusalem. He sent messengers on ahead of him. Along the way, they entered a Samaritan village to prepare for his arrival, but the Samaritan villagers refused to welcome him because he was determined to go to Jerusalem. When the disciples James and John saw this, they said, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven to consume them?” But Jesus turned and spoke sternly to them, and they went on to another village.
As Jesus and his disciples traveled along the road, someone said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.”
Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and the birds in the sky have nests, but the Human One has no place to lay his head.”
Then Jesus said to someone else, “Follow me.”
He replied, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.”
Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead. But you go and spread the news of God’s kindom.”
Someone else said to Jesus, “I will follow you, Lord, but first let me say good-bye to those in my house.”
Jesus said to him, “No one who puts a hand on the plow and looks back is fit for God’s kindom.”
I’m Like a Bird by Nelly Furtado
by Christina Rossetti
Lord grant us eyes to see
Within the seed a tree,
Within the glowing egg a bird,
Within the shroud a butterfly:
Till taught by such, we see
Beyond all such creatures thee,
And hearken for thy tender word
And hear it, ‘Fear not: it is I.’
The Lord’s Prayer
Dear One, closer to us than our own hearts, farther from us than the most distant star, you are beyond naming.
May your powerful presence become obvious not only in the undeniable glory of the sky, but also in the seemingly base and common processes of the earth.
Give us what we need, day by day, to keep body and soul together, because clever as you have made us, we still owe our existence to you.
We recognize that to be reconciled with you, we must live peaceably and justly with other human beings, putting hate and bitterness behind us.
We are torn between our faith in your goodness and our awareness of the evil in your creation, so deliver us from the temptation to despair.
Yours alone is the universe and all its majesty and beauty.
So it is, Amen.
Human by Goldfrapp
God, our passionate life,
we bless you for the infinite beauty of created things –
sand, wind, wave, and the wings of the eagle –
for the love of land and people,
for the vine and the fruit and the good wine.
We bless you for the endurance of hope,
for the promise of renewal,
and for fleeting moments on the mountaintop.
Blessed are you, God, our passionate life.
May the blessing of God – the Creative Idea, the Creative Energy,
and the Creative Power,
be with us and remain with us always. Amen.