Reflections

Lockdown, A Poem on St. Patrick’s Day

St. Patrick’s Day 2020 won’t be remembered for the parades, the green beer, or revelry. It will be remembered as the year we celebrated at home in self isolation. I will remember it as my 23rd anniversary on this island. I arrived on March 17th, and it marked the beginning of my new life. I often wonder what my life would have been like if I hadn’t taken the ferry that brought me here from England, but it’s futile thinking about the twists and turns of one’s life, the directions we didn’t take. I like to think we end up just where we belong.

Words of comfort slipped into my awareness today. Without searching or asking for them, they found me anyway. In case you haven’t read this prayer or poem (a matter of perspective), I’d like to share it with you.

I took this photo near Gougane Barra church, Co. Cork

Lockdown

Yes there is fear.

Yes there is isolation.

Yes there is panic buying.

Yes there is sickness

Yes there is even death.

But,

They say that in Wuhan after so many years of noise

You can hear the birds again.

They say that after just a few weeks of quiet

The sky is no longer thick with fumes

But blue and grey and clear.

They say that in the streets of Assisi

People are singing to each other across the empty squares,

keeping their windows open

so that those who are alone may hear the sounds of family

around them.

They say that a hotel in the west of Ireland

Is offering free meals and delivery to the housebound.

Today a young woman I know is busy spreading fliers with her number through the neighborhood

So that elders may have someone to call on.

Today churches, synagogues, mosques, and temples

are preparing to welcome and shelter the homeless, the sick, the weary

All over the world people are

slowing down and reflecting

All over the world people are

looking at their neighbours in a new way

All over the world people are

waking up to a new reality

to how big we really are.

To how little control we really have.

To what really matters.

To Love.

So we pray and we remember that

Yes there is fear.

But there does not have to be hate.

Yes there is isolation.

But there does not have to be loneliness.

Yes there is panic buying.

But there does not have to be meanness.

Yes there is sickness.

But there does not have to be disease of the soul.

Yes there is even death.

But there can always be a rebirth of love.

Wake to the choices you make as to how to live now.

Today, breathe.

Listen, behind the factory noise of your panic

The birds are singing again

The sky is clearing,

Spring is coming,

And we are always encompassed by Love.

Open the windows of your soul

And though you may not be able

to touch across the empty square,

Sing.

By Brother Richard, Capuchin Franciscan Priest-Friar living in Ireland

For more inspiration, follow Brother Richard, a Christian Meditation / Mindfulness teacher to young people, here.

It is remarkable that during this time of turmoil, the earth is healing. There has already been a sizable reduction of pollution during the lockdown. In Venice the water is clear, fish are visible, and the swans have returned. Nature is exerting its resilience. Maybe this is the wake up/ shake up we humans needed to turn things around, to remember that all of life is connected. We’ve been forced into stillness, a time to reflect. Even now, when we face a global crisis, there is still cause for hope.

6 thoughts on “Lockdown, A Poem on St. Patrick’s Day

  1. Love, love, love this 🙂 It’s a reawakening! What a beautiful photo of your area and I can feel nature rejoicing. I hope you and your family are well. Jase picked the girls up from the airport yesterday. I snagged a great idea from a fellow blogger to paint happy pictures on river rocks and leave them around sidewalks and trails to bring joy to others if they are out walking. It will be something positive to focus on and do with the girls. I will clean a home today and am off for the rest of the week as some families have cancelled and the consignment store I work at is closed until April. New normals, we must embrace new normals.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks 😊 What a great idea! A creative activity to spread joy and light.🌟I just ordered materials online to start preparing for Easter: a spring cross stitch kit for a table runner that my daughter can work on, and natural egg die for my toddler. I just hope the post keeps operating and that we receive our craft stuff before any further lockdowns are put into place. Yes, we’re all learning to accept the new normal… Enjoy painting and spending time with the girls!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh my, I do hope you’ll receive your crafts as well, that sound lovely 🙂 The girls collected a big bag of river rocks yesterday while I was working. Glad they did and we are getting a big snow storm today and tomorrow. So weird, it’s raining buckets right now and will dump snow in a few hours……….

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Did the snow come as forecasted? I can’t imagine! It’s been so long since I lived somewhere snowy… I actually miss it. Can the girls go sledding while they’re with you? Sounds like you’re all having a great time together. ⛄️

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Yes it did! It’s still coming down. We don’t have sleds but our landlord has an ATV that he lets us use. Jase has taken the girls on that. A giggle 🤭 fest for sure 💕
        Our paint came yesterday, we painted lots of rocks. Well I only got through one lol I like to take my time.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. That sounds like so much fun! I’m like you and take my time with things. My knitting project is going slowly but I’m enjoying it. Our Easter craft stuff still hasn’t arrived. I hope you’ll share photos of the snow and your painted rocks. I’m looking forward to catching up on blogs this evening. 😊

        Like

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