I found this poem through a podcast that has a “poem of the day” that they read and analyze a bit. While I often forget, reading and learning more poetry follows a desire I have to immerse my life in more beauty.
The poem is called “Perhaps the World Ends Here” by Joy Harjo.
The world begins at a kitchen table. No matter what, we must eat to live.
The gifts of earth are brought and prepared, set on the table. So it has been since creation, and it will go on.
We chase chickens or dogs away from it. Babies teethe at the corners. They scrape their knees under it.
It is here that children are given instructions on what it means to be human. We make men at it, we make women.
At this table we gossip, recall enemies and the ghosts of lovers.
Our dreams drink coffee with us as they put their arms around our children. They laugh with us at our poor falling-down selves and as we put ourselves back together once again at the table.
Continue reading “Perhaps the World Ends Here”
I am a long way from having a family and kids of my own, but this morning I was led to consider what I would want it to look like. Although I didn’t come up with specifics, I reflected on a few elements that I would like to implement somehow. From my vantage point, I am still able to be filled with high-minded ideals and hopeful expectation of a peaceful family life. In the midst of fighting children, endless laundry, and a whirlwind of activities, I am sure my ideals will be made a bit more practical and a bit less perfected.
While at times difficult to discern, parents have a tremendous impact in shaping their children’s personalities and values. Yesterday, my sister and I took our niece and nephews to a play. Throughout the whole play, my niece would slide over to me and say excitedly, “I can’t wait!” or “I’m so excited!” It never really made sense to me until I re-told the story to her mom later. My sister-in-law said that her daughter was probably saying what she had been saying over the past few days in anticipation of moving to a new home. If this can happen for phrases or actions, then the same would be true for matters of faith.
Parents are the primary educators of their children in the faith. When parents model the faith, the children will seek to do the same thing. It is a monumental task that can seem a bit overwhelming. At their baptism, you promise to instruct them in the faith and lead them to Heaven. So this morning in Mass, I considered: how does one do this? Continue reading “The Evangelized Family”
“What do your parents do?”
“My dad is a retired firefighter and now drives people at a retirement home. My mom stayed home with us when we were young and now works as a receptionist at a clinic.”
“Hmm. I thought it would be something different…I thought your dad would be a politician or something.”
“Nope. My dad is pretty ordinary.”
Some of the people at the table laugh and one says that the next time he sees my dad, he will tell him that I said he is ordinary.
“What did they do to teach the faith? Did you go to daily Mass?”
“No. We prayed the rosary sometimes and usually prayers at night. My parents just talked about the faith very openly and we always went to Mass on Sunday. My parents are pretty ordinary. They just did what they were supposed to: they were our primary educators in the faith.” Continue reading “Ordinary”