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CSJP Poetry: Pondering Presence by Sister Margaret Redmond, CSJP


Our CSJP community is blessed with many talented writers. Here we are pleased to share a poem by Sister Margaret Redmond, CSJP.



My sunhouse is safe
Several elevations above sea level
in St. Beunos Spirituality Centre.
Below the distant fields are awash
from December’s incessant rains
Few animals to be seen – the land is bogland.
Contrast the fields above me –
Cattle and sheep grazing in lush pasture as if mid May

Incredible sun ablaze, with warmth too
Most trees bare except for verdant evergreens
Some like Christmas trees shining, twinkling
tall and straight
Others bent and twisted and ageing
Lawns with pleasant smell of dewy grass.
Have to keep reminding myself it is mid January!
Could Spring be mistaken in its leap forward
even if not total in its tumultuous spring-ness?
Daffodils, primroses, daisies, bluebells, buttercups
all adorned in their beauty
While I patiently wait for sleepy snowdrop to appear.

Here in my sunhouse
Peace, Serenity, Stillness, Freedom abound.
Thrush, blackbird, seagull announce their presence
peeping through my windows
Squirrels pose for my attention and food
Even a wasp and butterfly pay a visit to my still centre
Busy A55 Road less than a mile away, yet all is calm.
To my left the Rock Chapel
now with its beautiful stain-glass windows
A gem, saturated in prayer by pilgrims in their thousands.

In the distance my eyes
soak in the exquisite grandeur of snow capped – Snowdon
Together with Llandudno Pier
Reflecting the glory of creation and their Creator
The sea water smooth as polished glass
completes the breath-taking panoramic view
Reminding me of John Masefield’s “Seafever”

How can anyone be so blessed
Seeing from here the grandeur of God’s Creation
No wonder the Jesuit Poet Gerard Manley Hopkins
could not put down his quill
As I walk my daily path and ponder, leaning on my stick
Walking the labyrinth, carrying you in my heart
I relish the sacredness of this blessed place
The many footsteps of people who have walked this ground
before time began – a history only God knows.

This poem originally appeared in the Spring 2014 issue of Living Peace

"We are consciously choosing to shape the future rather than allowing the future to shape us."

Sheila Lemieux, CSJP