Thursday, December 6, 2012

take me out among the stars

From the NASA Space Advent Calendar which is HERE.

Resembling comets streaking across the sky, these four speedy stars are plowing through regions of dense interstellar gas, creating brilliant arrowhead structures and trailing tails of glowing gas. The stars in these NASA Hubble Space Telescope images are among 14 young runaway stars spotted by the Advanced Camera for Surveys between October 2005 and July 2006. 

All things stir by night,
waking or sleeping,
conscious of the nearness of their ruin.

Only man makes himself illuminations he conceives to be 
solid and eternal.

But while we ask our question and come to our decisions,
God blows our decisions out, the roofs of our houses cave
in upon us,
the tall towers are undermined by ants, the walls crack and
cave in,
and the holiest buildings burn to ashes
while the watchman is composing a theory of duration.

Now is the time to meet You, God, where the night is 
where the forest opens out under the moon 
and the living things sing terribly that only the present is
and that all things having a past and a future are doomed to
pass away!

I ask these useless question,
I do not wait for an answer, because I have begun to realize
You never answer when I expect.

And now my whole being breathes the wind
and my hand is on the door through which I see the

The door swings out upon a vast sea of darkness and of 
Will it come like this, the moment of my death?
Will You open a door upon the great forest
and set my feet upon a ladder under the moon,
and take me out among the stars? 

-Thomas Merton, "Fire Watch", The Sign of Jonas, pp. 349-362


  1. What a great poem Beth. You find the most amazing things !! Blessings

    1. I'm not sure if I can keep this up until Xmas, Phil, but rather amazingly these Merton quotes keep presenting themselves as the NASA photos do! We'll see what happens ...

  2. Wow! Lovely bit of Merton! Thanks for this ! I am with you . I making it my practice to read these aloud to myself each day. This ia new Merton for me...think I will read it aloud several times today!!

  3. Thank you. Your posts are like a drink of clear water. I read them and forward them to several friends.