Monday, September 19, 2005


Swallows have been in their queues all week.
Summer sun gave way to rain,
storms came,
and then they flew following a favourable wind.

There is a sadness in the empty wires between the poles,
as if the bird's departure stole the warmth away
and brought grey winter
to our gate.

I have wandered this unknown town tonight in rain,
learning its street names, listening to new accents echo
in the empty streets.

I have used imagination like a tool of faith
to see this as an empty nest which you will fill
feathered with new friendships,
lined with love and grace.

Bring summer to this place
as you brought summer to the other nest
which we call home.

Return as seasons circle round the sun;
and may you always find the nest you left a welcome place to be.

We listen eagerly for swallow calls

and watch the evening skies for skimming wings,
yet never make a cage to trap them in.

We hope one day to find more swallows on the wire than left

and know that other nests are fruitful as our own once was
and life is gracious as the gift

was ever meant to be.

(c) A McN

Meeting my eldest boy on his first night in his university town (and carrying all the anxieties a parent ever carries at such times). Five years have passed since then; he has found love, marriage and a community of friendship and faith. Life was gracious as the gift was ever meant to be.


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