A Poem for Late Winter and Lent by Arnold Kenseth

 

My friend the late Arnold Kenseth was a Congregational minister and a first-rate New England poet with an eye for God’s presence in the world all around him.

It’s late winter here in the Berkshires (he lived about forty miles from here in S. Amherst).  I matched up his poem with a photo I shot yesterday of a still frozen lake while snowshoeing on the Taconic Crest Trail on the Massachusetts/ New York border.

I thought Arnold’s poem has a Lenten ring to it.

A COLLECT FOR COMPASSION

There in the rudest tree
Where winter grips and rocks
The black indefinite cold,
Comes the small chickadee,
And like my soul, pipes
Anxious prayer, implores
An opening of doors,
Some crust and surety.
My hand, give him his bread!
May whirlwind God pause
From His storms and come
To me with Cup and Crumb.
Arnold Kenseth (The Ritual Year, 1993)

(Photo: R. L. Floyd,  Frozen Lake,  March 8, 2010)

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