Saturday, 05 October 2019 23:58

Holy Breath

Written by  Priscilla K. Garatti
Holy Breath Photo by Raa_Sz from FreeImages

I contnue to read It's Never Too Late To Begin Again by Julia Cameron. The book contains 12 weeks of material with tasks to complete. One of the assignments is to break up one's life in five-year segments and answer questions that evoke thoughts and emotions and memories. This week I answered questions spanning ages 16-20. Those were hard, lonely years, perhaps hard and lonely for anyone emerging into adulthood. One of the questions Ms. Cameron asked this week: "What were callings you tried and then abandoned?"

I'm unsure if writing poetry would be considered a calling, but for a time during those years I wrote poems, and some were published in the university's literary magazine. I'm not sure when I stopped writing poetry. Or why. After about a year, I abandoned the art form. I've written three or four poems over the last decades, but nothing as prolific as that one year in college. As I remembered myself at that age, I felt great love for that young woman. She did not know her strength. She did not understand the breadth and width of God's grace. I wrote her a poem. I went back to that time in history to honor her courage, her perseverance. She serves me now. I draw on her vulnerability and brave heart. Perhaps she has led me back to poetry and whispers, "Begin again."


Holy Breath


If they'd been looking in the window,

   they'd see a girl unmoored.

Like a toy ship stranded on the window sill,

   Sails trimmed, but no ocean underneath.


She couldn't have known then the things

   she knows now.

Couldn't have seen the horizon that stretched for eternity

   like a blue silk cord.


The striving, the shoulds, the musts,

   the sheer effort to perform each day stirred no wind,

   though she wished it, the wanting not enough.


What came, what let that deep ocean glide in

   and swell and clamor around her 

   was recognition. Inkling.


That she was not small.

That she was no trinket to be admired on a ledge.

Not hidden. 

Holy breath in those sails.


"What were callings you tried and then abandoned?" 





More in this category: « Adagio Fragility »

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What Readers Are Saying

In Missing God Priscilla takes a brave and unflinching look at grief and the myriad ways in which it isolates one person from another. The characters are full-bodied and the writing is mesmerizing. Best of all, there is ample room for hope to break through. This is a must read.

Beth Webb-Hart (author of Grace At Lowtide)

winner"On A Clear Blue Day" won an "Enduring Light" Bronze medal in the 2017 Illumination Book Awards.

winnerAn excerpt from Missing God won as an Honorable Mention Finalist in Glimmertrain’s short story “Family Matters” contest in April 2010.