Passion Flower Clip Art

Ode To the Passionflower

by Helen Losse

O, passionflower,
growing in Mary’s Garden—
your lavender flowers prophetic in unction:

Your tendrils are shown forth
as Christ’s scourging, the three top stigma the nails,
the five lower anthers the wounds, the radial
filaments the crown of thorns,
placed on the head of the “King of the Jews.”

O, teach us, teach us, little reminder—

for red stains are His blood, shed,
the style to mock, to offer Him vinegar:
Your fragrance all spices that anoint,
and like the dogwood, your taller neighbor,
with each flower Calvary’s cross, your
blossoms focus on the sadness:

For, while gladly we walk in the garden,
the joy of heaven has yet to come.

first published in Flutter


Smiles Breaking Through Tears by Henri Nouwen

Dying is a gradual diminishing and final vanishing over the horizon of life.  When we watch a sailboat leaving port and moving toward the horizon, it becomes smaller and smaller until we can no longer see it.   But we must trust that someone is standing on a faraway shore seeing that same sailboat become larger and larger until it reaches its new harbor.   Death is a painful loss. When we return to our homes after a burial, our hearts are in grief.  But when we think about the One standing at the other shore eagerly waiting to welcome our beloved friend into a new home, a smile can break through our tears.