Today we sang Holden Evening Prayer and it was like coming home. I chose some poems on silence by Thomas Merton and R.S. Thomas to accompany the service. There was simple pleasure at gathering and singing, keeping quiet and listening together.
At morning and at evening prayer today I read from Leonard Cohen's Book of Mercy a good friend gave me yesterday. I had never come across his writing before and reading his 50 psalms has really been blowing me away to say the least. Very powerful.
But now looking back on my day and given all my recent pondering on fragments, I wonder whether my praying and practice of spirituality are not in some ways mere fragments of longing, for God and for myself. Does that make sense?
Anyway here is one of Leonard Cohen's Psalms (rendered into slightly more inclusive language):
Blessed are you who has given each person a shield of loneliness so that they cannot forget you. You are teh truth of loneliness, and only your name addresses it. Strengthen my loneliness that I may be healed in your name, which is beyond all consolations that are uttered on this earth. Only in your name can I stand in the rush of time, only when this loneliness is yours can I lift my sins toward your mercy.