"Imitation is not just the sincerest form of flattery - it's the sincerest
form of learning."— George Bernard Shaw
Welcome to Day 7 of FEET IN THE CREEK. Today is also Spiritual Journey Thursday, in which we contemplate our One Little Word for 2016. So today's post is doing double duty as we focus on Bobbie Ann Taylor's word: Merciful.
For each day I have chosen a favorite poem, a favorite poet, or a favorite friend. I will look at the work, decide what draws me to it, what makes it resonate for me, and then write my own poem about the creek with those techniques in mind. These are first drafts, so nothing will be especially polished, but they will be starting points for revision after the month is done. Feel free to follow along or join in.
Today's poet is Carmen Bernos de Gasztold. Gasztold was a French poet who lived from 1919-1995. Her book, Prayers from the Ark, was published by Viking Press in 1992. English author, Rumer Godden, translated the prayers in 1962. This version, also from Viking, features illustrations by Barry Moser. I found the book while rummaging in a used book store and fell in love immediately. You can read other poems from the book here.
from Prayers from the Ark
The Prayer of the Cock
Do not forget, Lord,
it is I who make the sun rise.
I am Your servant
but, with the dignity of my calling,
I need some glitter and ostentation.
All the same,
I am Your servant,
only...do not forget, lord,
I make the sun rise.
Original © Carmen Bernos de Gasztold for Le Mieux Aime and Prieres dans l'Arche, 1947 and 1955
English translation © Rumor Godden 1962, renewed 1990
My Intention: Write a prayer in the voice of the creek. Include the idea of mercy.
The Prayer of the Creek
Send rain, Lord.
I am not a mighty river
like the Chattahoochee
with waters aplenty.
I stay within my banks
even when I'm full.
But now, your sun
has shrunk me
to a puny trickle.
Be merciful to me, Lord.
© Doraine Bennett, 2016. All rights reserved.