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Beannacht (by John O’Donohue)

Sometimes all you can do is bless someone and wish them blessing.  You can’t change what they’re going through, though you wish you could.  It’ difficult to figure out how to ease their suffering or bear their burden.  Sometimes all you can do is send them love from within, hold hope for them when they can’t for themselves and send them blessing.

Beannacht” is the Gaelic word for “blessing.” A “currach” is a large boat used on the west coast of Ireland.

And maybe that’s all we can do – wish them well on their journey, send them love, intend them peace that they may feel some safety and comfort in the bow of the boat though the waves may crash for a time – to somehow “work the words of love around them.”

In these earthy, celtic, primal words of O’Donohue may these images bring you hope.  (To read these words is good, but to hear them read by the author in this video snippet is even better – almost a spiritual experience in and of itself.)

For Josie

On the day when
The weight deadens
On your shoulders
And you stumble,
May the clay dance
To balance you.

And when your eyes
Freeze behind
The grey window
And the ghost of loss
Gets in to you,
May a flock of colours,
Indigo, red, green,
And azure blue,
Come to awaken in you
A meadow of delight.

When the canvas frays
In the currach of thought
And a stain of ocean
Blackens beneath you,
May there come across the waters
A path of yellow moonlight
To bring you safely home.

May the nourishment of the earth be yours,
May the clarity of light be yours,
May the fluency of the ocean be yours,
May the protection of the ancestors be yours.

And so may a slow
Wind work these words
Of love around you,
An invisible cloak
To mind your life.