This Morning

This morning I woke
And found the sun
Rising up to greet me
He was all a’ pearl
And all a’ gold
As he floated o’er the sea

In a rhyme
From mariner’s time
Red sunrise is a warning
But I did not care
And was free as the air
For my heart was burning

This morning I woke
And found the sea
Full of wind and song
She was all of bright
And all of dark
And made my heart long

It beat with powerful zungunrhe
For something beyond the dunes
For something beyond the sea
Searching for my own lost Lenora
Who once flew higher than me

This morning I woke
And found the wind
Ready to bear me away
She was all of joy
And all of fear
As she road in upon the day

I opened my wings
I raised my sail
I wanted to sing
And my lungs did not fail

With all the sea before me
I heard the heavens ring

As I shouted my triumphant goodbye
So all the world could hear
Then I took to the sky
Without any fear

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Prayer

To an outside observer, all religions seem to be based on one very human trait: hope. All religions are built because of one hope or another: hope of life after death, of better things to come, of someone who loves you, of bettering yourself through devotion. Prayer is at the center of this hope, a channel for it, a focused wish.
It may be obvious to you from other posts that I am something of an irreligious heretic, but if there is something all humans understand and are affected by, it is hope.

For instance, when I was sixteen years old, I had strange heart flutters. After visits to the doctor and some time living with a heart monitor, I was diagnosed with an SVT, heart palpitations caused by a misfiring nerve in my heart. It was mild enough, but could worsen over time. Surgery was suggested and I thought it best to get it over with. Of course I was scared. I’ve always hated anesthesia, the way it just blanks out hours of your life, and there was always, of course, the chance that something could go wrong. What got me through me fear and what supported me up until I went under was no so much the statistics, the odds in my favor, or even the best wishes of family and friends. It was an idle mention, small talk between my mother and a neighbor, that I had been put on the prayer list at their church. Why was it that I was so comforted by strangers asking a deity I had no faith in to assist me? It was the natural and powerful sympathetic reaction to their hope for me.

Prayer is a beautiful thing.

When religion is stripped down to its bones, it’s all made of hope. And religion is at its most beautiful when the religious are hoping for the good of a stranger.