The Here, The Now

     gift from the sea The here, the now, and the individual, have always been special concern of the saint, the artist, the poet, and—from time immemorial—the woman. In the small circle of the home she has never forgotten the particular uniqueness of each member of the family; the spontaneity of now; the vividness of here. This is the basic substance of life. these are the individual elements that form the bigger entities like mass, future, world. We may neglect these elements but we cannot dispense with them. They are the drops that make up the stream. They are the essence of life itself. It may be our special function to emphasize again these neglected realities, not as a retreat from greater responsibilities  but as a first real step toward a deeper understanding and solution of them. When we start at the center of ourselves, we discover something worthwhile extending toward the periphery of the circle. We find again some of the joy in the now, some of the peace in the here, some of the love in me and thee which go to make up the kingdom of heaven on earth.
       The waves echo behind me. Patience—Faith—Openness, is what the sea has to teach. Simplicity—Solitude—Intermittency . . . But there are other beaches to explore. There are more shells to find. This is only a beginning.
      And so I am finished with Gift From the Sea – I pray I am able to carry these thoughts forward into my life that I might be changed for the better. . .

On Waiting



In this darkness

the minutes shrink us,

the seconds dry us out.

Time is an enemy.

When will this suffering be over?

When will it finish?

You are there, helpless.

My hand goes out

But does not bring relief.

I am there helpless.

Your eyes fill with tears

and you cannot help me.

The pain lives in us.

It is our particular pain. 

Necessary pain.

We wait on it.

When will it be done?

When will it be finished?

The minutes bake us.

Dry time, mini-seconds,


It forges us.

We wait on it and long

for God’s time–

Time within time.


becoming breadBecoming Bread – Embracing the Spiritual in the Everyday

By Gunilla Norris

On being tested…

*When an apprentice gets hurt, or complains of being tired, the workmen and peasants have this fine expressions: ‘It is the trade entering his body.’ Each time we have some pain to go through, we can say to ourselves quite truly that it is the universe, the order and beauty of the world, and the obedience of creation to God that are entering our body.  –Simone Weil  

*Yet the fire can seem unbearable. Feelings burn hot and so very precisely. The place where we hurt the most is also where the greatest possibilities lie. Pain wakes us up.

When those we love are in the fire and we can only watch, it is terrible. We feel helpless and afraid. When we are in the fire and no escape is possible, we tremble and shrink back. The passage through and into the heat of life is what we want…what we dread. …

Yet our pains can and do begin to heal in the cauterizing flame, in the heat of becoming.

We wait with those we love when they are there.

We try to trust their pain and ours.

Can we bear it?

Can we somehow let it have its way? 

becoming breadBecoming Bread – Embracing the Spiritual in the Everyday

By Gunilla Norris