Poetry Corner: New Publication by Fr. Chuck Peek
TNE is proud to share a new collection of poems published by Fr. Chuck Peek, Breezes on Their Way to Becoming Winds. The poetry collection is available from http://finishinglinepress.com. Poet/editor Susan Swartwout says: “poems…accessible yet challenging…entertaining and gracefully connected in heart and mind.” [TNE ed. – What could describe our beloved Fr. Peek better than that!]
Today’s poem, just in time for Palm Sunday, is from this new collection.
Branching Out: Palm Sunday in Changchun
There were palm trees in Shanghai,
but here the bare-branched trees
offer little to the passers-by.
Off the hill to the north, kites
catch the strong currents and soar,
their tails banners in the dusky skies.
Below, along Xiyou Da Lu,
the way is strewn with the usual debris
from where today’s vendors had set up shop.
We come and go through the narrow gate
through which students bike, or parade
to waiting rows of buses and taxis.
Now, in our rooms, above the street,
below the hill, we believe we can feel
some heat in the radiator along the wall.
We have moved the flowers Mary brought
to the table where bread and wine
will make a miracle of being anywhere at all.
She was painfully shy, explained in an email
it was her bad acnes, her bad English,
but this did not alter where her face was set,
like another’s she’s never heard of, who,
burdened by different streets and hills and skies,
too trudged on till what was willed was finished.
March 20, 2005