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Mill Bay
A blessed moment 
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Derelict house..
Put Out Into..
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Poetry and Prayer

Here is a collection of prayers and poetry sent by parishioners. We hope you enjoy them. They are a mixture of religious and non- religious verse.
Ann Murray provided much of the material. Ann has plenty more and could be persuaded to add them to the site!
               Your comments can be left on our Guest Book.

The Parting
(In memory of Pope John Paul 11)
This feeble heart
These trembling limbs
I offer to the King of Kings.

My faltering voice
No longer rings
But in my soul
It sings and sings.

When I close my eyes and dream
I wander by green fields and streams
And pick wild flowers
Where hills are steep
And breathe clean air
And breathe it deep.

One day these dreams
Will never end
And we will be as one again
And look upon the face of love
And live in peace forever.

The Master
When Jesus sat talking with James and John
As night edged in over ebbing waters,
Did His words hang in the humid air
Like grapes on invisible vines,
To be plucked and shared,
Savoured in a time when finer dust
Would trickle from their sandals,
And the unfamiliar stir longings
For brotherhood, for signs,
For reminders of the sense of homeliness
That marked a Jesus- centred Galilean night?

His Holy Name
In this secular world
There is one belief I hold dear:
I am a child of God;
I belong to Him,
Who is perfect love.
He is my most valued friend,
My loving and constant protector.

May I never lose sight of His face,
Never cease to speak his Holy name,
For fear that He should become
One of �The Disappeared�,
Taken and ruthlessly silenced,
Year after long-suffering year.

Fledglings
Unravelling woven intricacies
Of an abandoned nest
Finding fragments of speckled eggs
Rummaging later in the attic
For that old ornithological guide
Stumbling in the dimming light
Feeling something give beneath my feet
Discovering the broken hand
Of her first Christmas doll
Picking up fragments of wan porcelain
Cradling them in the folds of my palm.

Tsunami Disaster
Lights of life put out,
Thousands without trace,
Pain and suffering and loss
On a shocking scale.
Children numbed, parents robbed
Of their families, all they possessed.
But through this darkness runs a vital thread
Connecting them and us,
A common humanity that recognises
Brothers and sisters, in the injured,
The homeless, the distressed.
And so we rally to freely give from the heart
What we can, then, just when we think
We have given all and it is it done,
We discover one more precious thing
We each can give:
Through prayer, through fasting,
We can give hope, through love.

Dawn of a new day
New skins will hold,
Keep tight within their walls
New wines,
Just so the soul
When sins have been
Absolved and grace renewed,
We are as temples,
With radiant light imbued.

Grandmother
Petite, dressed in blue or black,
And, except in bed,
A crocheted hat to keep
Her pinned-up hair intact.
She always sat on the edge of a seat                                            
As if to meet the floor half-way
With tiny, dangling feet.
Constantly at her side, a stack of little
Cards, edged black, and prayer books
Softened and dog-eared with years-                                  
St. Anthony�s Treasury,
An hour Before the Blessed Sacrament,
Prayers to the Sacred Heart
.
With glasses on the end of her nose,
She would pray for the happy repose
Of relatives and friends,
Prayers of the faithful.

Corpus Christi
No longer bread,
No longer wine,
His body and His blood
Through sacrifice are mine.
Without such nourishment
My soul would be
A wasting headland
Above a raging sea,
A rootless acreage
With neither leaf nor tree.

Questions
He moves barefoot through grass and reeds
One hand�s sweep can scythe a field
Some have asked if what I hear,
If what I see,
Is real
Or plain imaginary.

My answer is silent as the rain
That strings glass beads on wires and frames
And springs the earth to life again
That it might yield fine barley.

Two or three
A characteristic irregularity

Of floor�trailing feet is

My cue to watch and wait

While she side�steps

Into her favourite seat;

Then, with an awkward

Movement of her head,

She turns towards me

Across the sloping aisle

And smiles, then waves

And makes a face that says

�It�s cold outside�, as she

Blows make-shift heat

Into her bloodless hands.

This bond of ours

Commands few words-

The air is silent, deep.

Much is pondered in the heart

Of which the lips daren�t speak.

  Go To Top

Mill Bay
 
The waters of the bay are lying low.

Grey seals are languishing on rocks,

Their bodies motionless under the sun.

Out beyond the shoreline

Oystercatchers have settled

On slippery spits, their bleeping

Shrill and loud in the breezeless air.

 

I am at rest, half asleep,

Swinging gently in a hammock

Of the mind�s making,

Between dry land and the sea,

All sense of time forsaken,

All worries cast to the wild,

Airborne and willing to travel

Out of myself for a while.

  Go To Top

A blessed moment
 Nothing has seemed the same since then,

Neither hill nor stream nor the pine trees� scent,

Even the cawing of crows in the glen

Seems changed, seems different.

 

The light on the lake was a pool of grace,

No cloud marred the blueness above,

Blessed were we, and holy the place

That mirrored God�s perfect love.

  Go To Top

   Northern Foreshore
Reclamation would not be easy here

Without a fight, the sea has clearly

Defined its hold, marking these walls

An unpalatable shade of green that

Slimes its gelatinous graffiti onto

Thicknesses of resistance.

 

You moved south where warmer winds

Rounded the corners of your Ulsterisms,

Yet it is to this same spot you return

Time and time again, your painter�s

Eye scanning the coastline, your mallow

Cheeks ever- resinous with rain.

  Go To Top

John
Somebody said you were sensitive
That you felt unworthy and weak
When truth hammered home the connection
Between sin and His nail-pierced feet.

Somebody spoke of a murmur
That rose from the lingering crowd
As He beckoned two to come closer

When the cries from the Cross grew loud.

Somebody said your brokenness
Resembled a wound lanced wide,
When free from the body of suffering
Flowed streams from His opened side.

Somebody said you were lonely,
Burdened with grief and pain
Till after His death and His rising
He came among you again.

With your mind�s eye set on His Kingdom
You took to the royal road,
Bringing the news of salvation
To nation and city and home.

                             (Ann Murray)

  Go To Top

Easter Morning
Knocknacarry
High above in branches limed with light
A blackbird sings on my behalf-
Something from the Book of Psalms
For the risen Christ, something
To delight the angels.
What is glory but man at his best?
The hunger I feel inside,
Just now, is put to rest.
In peaceful ways God hears my need,
And through the songs of bird
He fills my soul with grace
And I am healed.
To speak with Him on mornings
Such as these is love through nature
And by nurture best revealed.
Oh sing, blackbird, sing!
Fill these glens with music
And sweet praise
For Jesus Christ is risen
And darkness, like the stone,
is rolled away.

(Ann Murray)

  Go To Top

On Slemish
I gazed up at the sky and saw a field:

Stars scattered like seed on darkest soil,

And where the moon advanced no cloud concealed

A watchful eye above a world of toil,

While later, through the thinning dark converged,

Ascending notes of dawn- addressing birds.
                                        
(Ann Murray)

  Go To Top

When you think you are beyond the sea
When you think nobody is listening
When depression fills your heart
When you feel defeated, alone
When you feel you do not have the solution
When you think the way is long.
He, Jesus is walking by your side,
In the very boat with you.
 Alma Leticia Rojas



I saw a stranger to day
I put food for him in the eating place
And drink in the drinking place
And music in the listening place.
In the Holy Name of the Trinity
He blessed me and my house
My goods and my family.
Old Irish Prayer

  Go To Top

Derelict house in The Glens
Behind the roadside house
Lilac blossoms overhang the rocky burn,
Ivy branches imitate art form
In a contrivance of twists and turns.
Sedges ,hawkweeds and nettles stand
Well past shoulder height,
Where grave-faced boards hide windows
Stone walls are a silver-trailed white.
In an air that is sweetened with heat
Blue and orange glow bright
As smoke drifts up from the chimney
And surrenders itself to the night,
Grouped voices of chattering children
Can be heard at the rise of the latch
As the door of the cottage opens
And the hands on the clock turn back.
                                  
Ann Murray

Put Out Into the Deep
Put out into the deep
I will sustain you
Even while you sleep
My graces will contain you.

Put out into the deep
My light will ever guide you
Nothing should you fear
I am there beside you.

Put out into the deep
Though troubled seas surround you
Steadfast work will reap
Catches to astound you.
                                  
Ann Murray

  Go To Top

Rathlin Island
Westwards, past the harbour, buzzards soar silently
Above hills of abounding heather.
Beyond the meadowsweet of marshland
And mallard of fresh water,
We reach, by rough road, the Bull Light.
Castellated sea stacks are nesting sites
For fulmars and kittiwakes,
Whose incessant soulful cries
Drown out the wash below.
An endless rancid rise of fish oils and carcasses
Invades the nostrils,
While eyes and mind take in
The bastion that is the West Light,
Built with fearlessness and skills honed against
The hacking chillness of a might
That floored a thousand wrecks,
And hoarded bone on bone.
These islanders knew suffering:
The repeated bloodlust of invaders,
A people slaughtered almost to a man.
From Cnoc na Scridlin, on stormy nights,
A relentless sound of wailing is carried
Downhill by the wind,
Lest the living should forget
An ancestry thinned to a bloodline,
A heritage enshrined in island pride.
                                  
Ann Murray

  Go To Top

Cave Hill, Easter 2003
How beautiful the city looks from here
Gilded with an Easter morning light
A robin in a hedgerow shows no fear
While homing in on leftovers of night.
Church bells in the distance mark the day,
A fitting tribute to the risen Lord
Who, by His crucifixion led the way
To truth and life by loss of His own blood.
Still, a certain sadness fills the air,
Belfast bears its crosses long and tall
As history casts grey shadows down the hall
Of memories which darken and ensnare;
But Jesus in His dying shared our pain
And by His rising, raises us again.
                                  
Ann Murray

  Go To Top

Mary
Intuitiveness of a woman
Gracefulness of a lady
Pureness of a heavenly heart
Charitableness of an intercessor
Motherliness of one who listens
And waits, unable to settle
Until the sound of the key
In the latch marks the safe return
Of the wanderer to their eternal home.
                                  
Ann Murray


Children's Liturgy at 1pm mass every Sunday. Read more....


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A mix of religious and non religious verse here.


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