The following poem found its inspiration from an amazing poet along with early morning Mass. Reading just a portion from an entrancing Muslim poet, Shams-ud-din Muhammad Hafiz (c. 1320-1389) magnified the challenging words proposed in this morning’s homily. Friday morning came together like the limit to critical mass when I considered a recent and unexpected encounter with unkind,belittling words towards me and any other who got in this persons impressive vocabulary of discouragement.
Also, one need not be Catholic to understand (probably better than some Catholics!) the charity of simple kindness found in its beautiful array of forms. I listened to a refreshing yet challenging homily. Refreshing because I rely on mercy and grace yet challenging because I live in a world in need of it. In short, the saints had a saying of “Let my lips turn purple by drinking the blood of the Lamb“. It is not so much the ritual practice of imbibing but rather how long we choose to allow grace to frame our words in the color of charity. Truly, food and drink that feed our souls should exit similarly as words of grace.
My lips turn purple by the blood of the Lamb,
Let my words be rain not buffeting sands,
Where mercy enters may words not demand,
Past lips now purple by the blood of the Lamb.
True food, true drink
My soul now fed,
Grace pours out,
Where mercy once bled,
Therefore drink deeply from His cup,
Let grace color all words,
For our mouths are holes through a flute*,
Where Christ breathes and is heard.
Lord, I beg,
Frame my words in purple through the blood of the Lamb.
By Chris Clody 7/17/15
“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” ~Plato