A lover’s lament, a lover’s sigh.
The course of true love never did run smooth.
Trials and woes fall to those who
wish a fair ride without bumps and baggage.
I love you not with perfection as the end
but with honor for your heart so full of me
I wonder in astonishment how I am still by your side.
I love you on a true course where darkness
will fall, but in shadow I will find your hand,
we will guide one another to new day’s dawn.
Lysander and Hermia have nothing on us.
We will end together as they, only there will
be no trickery on our course, just one heart
joined to another.
What is this I see tonight in your Old Moon face,
not the sly wink of witnessing what we’re about.
It’s not your Familiar Beam taking note of a stolen
kiss behind the bleachers or the All Knowing Moon’s
affirming nod to the perfect pairing of two lovers.
Tonight I see, Harvest Moon, you are a Keening Moon.
How is it that I never noticed your O shaped mouth
before, a copycat round to your hanging frame in the
indigo sky. Oh, Sorrowing Moon, your O lament
surrounds me. I watch a thin grey silk sweep across
your moaning face unable to brush away sadness
falling from your mouth, wipe away heartache
dripping down upon us on this night of praise. I
cannot polish away your pain, wipe it clean with
a thin grey silk no more than clouds can change
Moon’s visage. I want my O arms to gather you near
me, unfurl the scarf from my shoulders, wrap you
inside to rest until laughter encircles you once more
under a May Bright Moon.
Tonight was filled with sadness. Lots of pain shared. Lots of prayers requested.
Driving home I noticed the moon’s face. I always see two eyes, a mushed nose, and a mouth. It was tonight that I noticed the mouth was shaped not like a smile but someone keening, moaning, lamenting. Has it always been that way?
I sat in the rain. It was a pouring cold rain
that was much too cold for this June day.
I wanted to feel this June’s deluge so I lifted
my face and tears from the sky poured over
my despair. I wanted to feel the pouring cold
rain, June’s deluge washing me of my sin.
Thunder rolled by and over my bearing. It filled
my ears. I cried out in tandem. I released my pain
to the pouring cold deluge, much to cold for
this June day. My tears were diluted with fresh
new water as I sat on a step under trees bowing,
unable to balance, not one extra drop, no longer.
My breath almost drowned, flowed out and down
until the lawn could hold no more. So I walked with
the deluge along bulging gutters, feet submerged
in June’s cold rain. I kicked at rain waters and
stomped on the waves rushing into the deep black
gash. The day’s deluge gulped down by the sewers
took my crimes and washed them away on this
cold June day. The deluge slowed. Streams turned
into drops. Then droplets. Then nothing at all. I raised
my face up to June’s grey day in gratitude of its
cleansing. I know that from rain green grows lush
and glorious, blooms arise with colors to adorn.
The deluge always cleanses. Pouring cold rain,
much too cold for this June day.
I was recently introduced to the lament. In a Celtic Spirituality retreat with Stefan Andre Waligur, I experienced the call and response of the lament. He spoke of how in our Western culture are afraid to let go of our emotions, especially in community. And subsequently we do not heal. We have lost a togetherness that only this opening of oneself, this free flow of emotion can offer.
Today as I sat waiting for tornado sirens to silence, listening to the relentless rain, I felt as if the world was in lament. I know this rain, once the damage from the hail heals, will bring new life to my garden. Much like a lament.
Thank you, Stefan.
Although this is not a lament, it is a lovely example of the kind of chanting we experienced at our retreat.