Monday, May 16, 2005

The Prayer Tree by Michael Leunig

"the prayer tree is the 2nd book to bring together a collection of michael leunig's prayers." [ed. i hope the following extracts don't qualify as spam] INTRODUCTION
A person kneels to contemplate a tree and to reflect the troubles and joys of life. [a description of the front cover] * * * * * * It is difficult to accept that life is difficult; that love is not easy and that doubt and struggle, suffering and failure, are inevitable for each and every one of us. We seek life's ease. We yearn for joy and release, for flowers and the sun. And although we may find these in abundance we also find ourselves lying awake at night possessed by the terrible fear that life is impossible. Sometimes when we least expect it we wake up overwhelmed by a massive sense of loneliness, misery, chaos and death: appalled by the agony and futility of existence. It is difficult indeed to accept that this darkeness belongs naturally and importantly to our human condition and that we must live with it and bear it. It seems so unbearable. . Nature*, however, requires that we have the darkness of our painful feelings and that we respect it and make a bold place for it in our lives. Without its recognition and acceptance there can be no true sense of life's great depth, wherein lies our capacity to love, to create and to make meaning. [big snip] A person kneels to contemplate a tree and to reflect upon the troubles and joys of life. The person imagines mornings and evenings in a great forest of prayers, swarming and teeming with life. . The person is learning how to pray. ----------------------------- Love is born With a dark and troubled face When hope is dead And in the most unlikely place Love is born: Love is always born. God help us to live slowly: To move simply: To look softly: To allow emptiness: To let the heart create for us. Amen God help us To rise up from our struggle. Like a tree rises up from the soil. Our roots reaching down to our trouble, Our rich, dark dirt of existence. Finding nourishment deeply And holding us firmly. Always connected. Growing upwards and into the sun. Amen

When the heart

Is cut or cracked or broken

Do not clutch it

Let the wound lie open


Let the wind

From the good old sea blow in

To bathe the wound with salt

And let it sting.


Let a stray dog lick it

Let a bird lean in the hole and sing

A simple song like a tiny bell

And let it ring

_____ [ed. i typed it as it's typed directly from the page.] [ed. p.s. re: the typing; "& it's hard work"] *[ed. nature not nietzsche (ed. tee-hee)] Posted by: air-ono at May 16, 2005 10:35 AM

I adore Michael Leunig. When I first read this book I cried. I have tears now again.
That's very sweet. I didn't know much about him until you commented and i went and looked him up. I can see why you adore him. It takes a lot to overcome the ugly world. He's a pro. :)
I will try to find that poem for you halfseoul..Will post it here if I find it...
hey're Taking the People's Treasure
Written By: Scott Silver, Executive Director, Wild Wilderness

"The People's Treasure is a wonderful poem by the Australian poet Michael
Leunig which beautifully describes how the privatizers are stealing what
we collectively own. It begins:

They're privatising things we own together.
And though we're still connected by the weather
They say that sharing things is now unsound.

They're lonelifying all the public spaces.
They're rationalising swags and billabongs.
They're awfulising nature's lovely places,
Dismantling the dreaming and the songs."

Wherever you look you can see the privatizers. Free-trade agreements, the
prison industrial complex, terminator seed technology and corporate run
school systems are just a few of the forms privatization is taking. It is
the impending Corporate Takeover of Nature with its associated
Privatization of Wildness where I have established my personal battle
lines in this larger fight."
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