“Turn away from sin and be faithful to the Gospel”


That’s what my Catholic friend told me they say to you on Ash Wednesday, when they wipe ashes in a cross on your forehead.

I cried at that. We have 40 days to celebrate a turning from sin and a turning to God, and I will celebrate with poetry. One time a friend gave up not eating oatmeal every day of Lent, which means that he had to eat oatmeal every day, a sort of nonfast. I laughed so hard at him for that.

So I guess that’s what I’m doing, too.  Go on and laugh.

I won’t post every poem I read here, but I’ll post some on my tumblr. The first installment is T.S. Eliot’s “Ash Wednesday.” It’s long. It’s hard to follow. It’s gorgeous. I love Eliot’s resolve, and I love how he doesn’t need to know everything. God saves, and nothing else, especially man’s tiny desire.
Part 1
Part 2

amberhaines
About me

9 Comments

Jessica
Reply February 17, 2010

Thank you Amber. I did not understand all of what you read...but i heard over and over in my heart..."Sovereignty" .(sp) We too have a few things n the crock pot and I need reminders of the Lord being in control of it all. This was my reminder today. Thanks.

Joy
Reply February 17, 2010

Oh oh! One of my favorites. (Of his.) Lovely to hear you read it, sweet honey voice flowing over the words. I think I am liking your resolve for this. I'll gladly eat the oatmeal with ya! :) I haven't entirely thought through how I want to walk through this Lenten season, but you have given me a component, I think. Thank you, always.

Cassie Boorn
Reply February 18, 2010

Thank you for reading this.

It was refreshing.

deb
Reply February 18, 2010

The Lenten season is the most beautiful.
As was your reading of those incredible words. Thank you Amber, as always, for letting me clamour up those rocks to sit with you awhile.

Danielle
Reply February 18, 2010

Thank you for sharing. I love T. S. Eliot, "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" being a favorite. I think I'll have to look this one up and read it.

Linda
Reply February 18, 2010

Thank you Amber. Time to dig out the poetry books.

hamster
Reply February 18, 2010

you really nailed it on part three. your voice switched, and you dug into the words with an added tinge of ferocity. great. that's my favorite part of your reading.

i want a video of seth singing a folk version of poe's "annabelle lee." i'll tap some tamborines when we visit. soon. cause, you know, we're coming in like a month. (i haven't actually told you that yet.)

just read your "How the Hollow Began" poem and played these videos for my class. they really liked your poem. they balked at the length of eliot's. i'll tell you more later.

bekah
Reply February 21, 2010

one of the best poems ever.
made even better.
i lit a candle and listened in darkness as you spoke the truth and light to my heart.
thank you, amber.

joann
Reply February 22, 2010

t.s. eliot is my FAVORITE! (yes I am screaming!) Love Four Quartets, love Wasteland, love it all (except CATS. I dislike CATS.) thank you for sharing. I'm so happy about this.

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