Spirituality of Love #6 – ‘Love is life itself’ by Chelle Trebilcock

a snapshot of material presented at solace ‘tuesday stuff’ may-june 2012

see spirituality of love #1 (20 June)  for more details

spirituality of love #6:

Human romance contains an invitation into divine romance,

and divine romance leads into freedom, healing, forgiveness, grace, love.

For me… it’s all about Jesus.

LOVE IS LIFE ITSELF by Chelle Trebilcock

“I know who you are”
declared his gaze
and I fell over once again
stumbling like a cripple
paralysed by longing

If only love were rational
and could be brought into line by cognitive will.
love rises up from the depths
and until it is free
it is the leviathan of dark waters.

Love is but a made up word
and should not be expected to carry the weight
of the experience it is striving to name.
And yet I find I need to say those words ‘I love you’
and I need to hear those words ‘I love you’
and we need to know those words ‘I love you’
in power and in truth.

It is simple.
I am summed up by these four blesséd letters
containing all life and meaning
and all I ever want ever again
is to love and be loved.

is life itself.

Spirituality of Love #5 – love poem by Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi

a snapshot of material presented at solace ‘tuesday stuff’ may-june 2012

see spirituality of love #1 (20 June)  for more details

spirituality of love #5:

the mystical love of God is like a rainbow and the human loves one of every colour

A POEM by Rumi from Divan 499, poem 3

Look at that face
those manners
that frame
those cheeks
those arms and legs
That complexion
that strength
that shining orb
filling out the shirt

Shall I compare to cypress? meadows?
to tulips? jessamine?
to the candle or the candelabra?
or to the rose dancing in the breeze?
O Love come like an agiary, assuming form and hue
Robbing the caravan of hearts along the highway
Good sir! Give us some respite.

In my flame and fire I pass the night to dawn
How blessed my victory at “The Sun in the zenith”
I spin around his bright org,
greet him without lips
throw myself down to earth
before he calls out “Come get it!”

Rose garden and paradise on earth you are
the eye and the light of the world you are
and also searing pain of the world
when your steps turn to cruelty
I come to pledge my life
you say
Don’t bother me, go!
I bow and obey and withdraw
you say
Come here, you fool!
His image joins company with fiery lovers
May your face
never for a moment
leave our sight!
Heart, patience!
Why so distracted from your focus
Do you ever steal an hour of sleep,
of a morning? in the evening?
The heart replies
His beauteous face
those two bewitching narcissi
his brow of hyacinth
rubies sweet to taste
everywhere blessed by fair name and good repute
last night I christened you anew:
Pain Incurable

the splendor of my being
the mover of my spheres
send flour, my dear, as grist
to keep the mill from grinding to a halt and spinning free

No more will I speak,
say this line and that’s enough:
My being melts in this desire
Befriend us, Our God!

(from Divan 499, poem 3)

Spirituality of Love #4 – ‘Love’ by Sebastian Moore

a snapshot of material presented at solace ‘tuesday stuff’ may-june 2012

see spirituality of love #1 (20 June) for more details

spirituality of love #4:  

happy love relationships negotiate the space between you and me with freedom and grace 

There is a line in this prayer that I kind of think is heresy, but all in all I think it is an extraordinary piece.  I’m afraid I have to give it a strong language and sexual references warning though – so don’t read on if you need your prayer tamed!

LOVE by Sebastian Moore

Christ! I’m ready now –
ready to get lost in the evangel of people’s bodies
accuracy of the flesh
kiss of truth
we cannot say what we are
we can only be to each other
touch each other with truth
and a miss is as good as a mile.

When I was a kid
that is yesterday
I kept myself within bounds
and sowed the dream out of bounds
the pleasure of the flesh without the bone
and thus was straddled between two childhoods
of the law and of the flesh
straddled, castrated, unmoving
unable to embrace
for the dreamed-of-lips were without truth
and truth without flesh
and I nowhere.

When suddenly is the new power
to bone the flesh from far-off galaxies
and quiver each to each
in the inerrant star-dance of people true to each other
and true to me who hardly know myself
the child who paddled in the still pools of the flesh
soft flesh soft light the still forbidden poison
as I laugh now at the forbidden nowhere.

O the wretched rag-bag of the unresolved
containing ‘I love you’ and ‘people are important’
and the absurd Law which filled the one with guilt and tried to bone the other
while the whole thing collapsed in a heap of shapeless me.
Now I am shaped to you and you
and we give each other the bloody obvious kiss
written in light years of the beginning.

Now we begin to love
and old God groans like a teacher who has laboured
from the beginning a lesson that was too obvious for the class
‘At last you’ve understood? You don’t say!
I gave you a law when the semen splashed off the vaginal wall into galaxies of direct speech
and you made the futile roundabout, the rules
in which it was impossible to say what you meant or what anything meant
and so I gave you my bloody obvious Christ
and still you kept your clothes on and went round and round
Him: honestly I was almost prepared to junk him and try again,
anything to get that one thing from you
to sing each other’s names
in the ribbed glory of my eternal making.’

‘I love you’ we said in the old world
and forgot the world, clinging to me and you,
but now the world invades
crushes the ancient sentence into a word
that is you me him
the universe has caught up with us and caught us up
into the word flesh crash –
Christ! how I love you.

In Sebastian Moore & Kevin Maguire, The Experience of Prayer (London; Darton, Longman &  Todd; 1969)

You may or may not have noticed that Sebastian Moore is a reddresstheology favourite.  Here’s some others of his poems:


this, the call

if I could just be one, no longer two

in the body

and one of his theology monographs:

let this mind be in you

Spirituality of Love #3 – ‘Wild Geese’ by Mary Oliver

a snapshot of material presented at solace ‘tuesday stuff’ may-june 2012 

see spirituality of love #1 (20 June) for more details

spirituality of love #3: 

‘glass half full’ love overflows from a fullness of love in our body/being in order to become a blessing to others and to ourselves

‘glass half empty’ love grasps at love in others in order to fulfil our own needs and too easily becomes a burden to others and a disappointment to ourselves

WILD GEESE by Mary Oliver

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
call to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting –
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

Spirituality of Love #2 – ‘I loved what I could love’ by St Theresa of Avilla

a snapshot of material presented at solace ‘tuesday stuff’ may-june 2012

see spirituality of love #1 (20 June)  for more details

spirituality of love #2: 

if I can face others without controlling or withdrawing from the space between us, love will (eventually) come to me


I LOVED WHAT I COULD LOVE by St Theresa of Avila

I had a natural passion for fine clothes, excellent food, and lively conversation about all matters that concern the heart still alive.

And even a passion about my own looks.

Vanities: they do not exist.

Have you ever walked across a stream stepping on rocks so not to spoil a pair of shoes?

All we can touch, swallow, or say aids in our crossing to God and helps unveil the soul.

Life smooths us, rounds, perfects, as does the river the stone, and
there is no place our Beloved is not flowing through the current’s
force you may not always like.

Our passions help to lift us.

I loved what I could love until I held Him, for then – all things – every world disappeared.