What Is Prayer? Poem by Alla Bozarth

What Is Prayer?

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Prayer is intimacy with the Great Mystery.
Be every moment aware of the Presence —
how you are loved!

She takes off Her wings
to heal you, He surrenders
everything for your sake.
At all times in every
hidden, open place
It lives in your deep
soul’s core, It moves
in your moving and acts
through your skin
and the skin or bark or shell
of all living beings— forms of angels,
and also of water, rocks, and fire.

So be awake to the life that is loving you
and sing your prayer, laugh your prayer,
dance your prayer, run
and weep and sweat your prayer,
sleep your prayer, eat your prayer,
paint, sculpt, hammer and read your prayer,
sweep, dig, rake, drive and hoe your prayer,
garden and farm and build and clean your prayer,
wash, iron, vacuum, sew, embroider and pickle your prayer,
compute, touch, bend and fold, but never delete
or mutilate your prayer.

Learn and play your prayer,
work and rest your prayer,
fast and feast your prayer,
argue, talk, whisper, listen and shout your prayer,
groan and moan and spit and sneeze your prayer,
swim and hunt and cook your prayer,
digest and become your prayer.

Release and recover your prayer.
Breathe your prayer.
Be your prayer.

Let prayer be your thinking
and thriving, your passionate
living and humble dying
back into Earth and God.
Let prayer be your senses and sex,
your political power, your confusion
and vision for good.

Let teaching tolerance and all childcare be prayer.
Let your mistakes be a prayer, and your unknowing.
Let remorse and forgiveness be prayer.

Make love in every act,
create growth in each intent.
Nature in any form serves
as sanctuary and temple.

Let your bath be an oracle chamber,
every trip anywhere a pilgrimage,
and your dreambed each night
the Holy of Holies.

And so you are praying.
So you do what you be,
and all your being is blessed
and all your life is a prayer.
And all your acts are a blessing.

From Moving to the Edge of the World
by Alla Renée Bozarth, iUniverse 2003. All rights reserved.

Alla Bozarth

Alla Bozarth

Portland, Oregon
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