Thursday, December 15, 2011

Jack Kerouac: three haiku

Beautiful summer night
     gorgeous as the robes
Of Jesus


The hermit's broom,
     the fire, the kettle
-- August night


Gull sailing
     in the saffron sky --
The Holy Ghost wanted it

+ + +

[From Book of Haikus, ed. Regina Weinreich (Penguin Books, 2003), pp. 30, 48, 70]

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Ethiopian anaphora

O Mary, vastness of the heavens,
foundation of the earth,
depth of the oceans, light of the sun,
beauty of the moon,
splendour of the stars,
your womb contained God
whose majesty makes man tremble.
Your arms cradled the burning coal.
You held on your lap the lion
whose majesty is awesome.
Your hands touched
him who is untouchable
and the divine fire within him.
Your fingers are like the incandescent tongs
with which the prophet received the coal
of the heavenly offering.
You are the basket bearing this burning bread
and you are the cup of this wine.
O Mary, you bring forth in your womb
the fruit of the offering ...
we most earnestly pray to you
that you may protect us from the ensnaring enemy
and that, just as the measure of water
is not divided from the wine,
so we may not separate ourselves from your son,
the lamb of salvation.

+ + +

[Found in Blessed are you who believed by Carlo Carretto, trans. Barbara Wall (Orbis Books, 1983), pp. 74-75]

Monday, December 12, 2011

Copiosa apud eum redemptio

De profundis clamavi ad te, Domine;
Domine, exaudi vocem meam.

Fiant aures tuæ intendentes
in vocem deprecationis meæ.

Si iniquitates observaveris, Domine,
Domine, quis sustinebit?

Quia apud te propitiatio est;
et propter legem tuam sustinui te, Domine.

Sustinuit anima mea in verbo ejus:
Speravit anima mea in Domino.
A custodia matutina usque ad noctem, speret Israël in Domino.

Quia apud Dominum misericordia,
et copiosa apud eum redemptio.

Et ipse redimet Israël
ex omnibus iniquitatibus ejus.

[Psalm 130 (129 in Vulgate)]