Saint Francis and the Sow (by Galway Kinnell)

The bud
stands for all things,
even for those things that don’t flower,
for everything flowers, from within, of self-blessing;
though sometimes it is necessary
to reteach a thing its loveliness,
to put a hand on its brow
of the flower
and retell it in words and in touch
it is lovely
until it flowers again from within, of self-blessing;
as Saint Francis
put his hand on the creased forehead
of the sow, and told her in words and in touch
blessings of earth on the sow, and the sow
began remembering all down her thick length,
from the earthen snout all the way
through the fodder and slops to the spiritual curl of the tail,
from the hard spininess spiked out from the spine
down through the great broken heart
to the sheer blue milken dreaminess spurting and shuddering
from the fourteen teats into the fourteen mouths sucking and blowing beneath them:
the long, perfect loveliness of sow.

Have you thought about this lately, that you are loved and you are lovely?  We can “flower” from within from self blessing, but how many of us “bless” ourselves?  But in order to do that we must know, or be “retaught” or relearn again something about our own loveliness.  To be told we are lovely.  To hear it in words or to feel it in a touch – some of us have had that blessing, some have not. Whether we had the fortune of receiving it from another or need to learn how to do it for ourselves today – may you know the perfect loveliness of you humanness, and of you this day.

“I have loved you with an everlasting love.”
– Jeremiah 31:3

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