Three Poems for the Troubled Heart

O Blessed Mary, Mother of All the Living

     O sweet lips 
which let fall
    fruit of the 
rest upon my sick heart; 
     Whose kind ears 
first would hear
     the Child's joy
and mirth resound, 
incline to my poor soul. 

Of Morning Birdsong

O thou downcast soul, 
     disturbed spirit, 
          weak frame—
     hearest thou weeping? 
Dost thou perceive sorrow,
     encounter careful
          worry or weight? 
     Nay! but listen! 
Hear them so simple and small, 
     of wakeful soul
          and fragile frame—
     Hark! how they sing! 
Here one, she sings her full, 
     Rejoined by 39 more, 
          inspired, in wonder 
     at One! so greater'n they! 

Who is the King of Glory?

Hey! blast the horn! 
Ho! see the Daystar from on high!
For to men a King is born; 
in the Lion Heart doth the vict'ry lie! 

Hark! stand ready, 
hear His orders given; 
keep footing firm, hand steady; 
at His Word our foes are far driven! 

See, our foes 'round us increase, 
so call our Commander, raise His banner high! 
Fear not His sending help to cease! 
For to the poor and oppressed He is nigh! 

Hosanna to the Son of Man! 
Help our brothers, O beauteous King! 
At Your gallop, the wolf fast ran; 
Strengthen hearts with the Love You bring! 
'Who is the king of glory? 
     the Lord, strong and might, 
     the Lord, mighty in battle!' 
~ Psalm 24:8 
'I will bless the Lord at all times;
his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
My soul makes its boast in the Lord;
    let the afflicted hear and be glad.
O magnify the Lord with me,
    and let us exalt his name together!
I sought the Lord, and he answered me,
    and delivered me from all my fears.
Look to him, and be radiant;
    so your faces shall never be ashamed.
This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him,
    and saved him out of all his troubles.
The angel of the Lord encamps
    around those who fear him, and delivers them.
O taste and see that the Lord is good!
    Happy is the man who takes refuge in him!
O fear the Lord, you his saints,
    for those who fear him have no want!
The young lions suffer want and hunger;
    but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.
Come, O sons, listen to me,
    I will teach you the fear of the Lord.
What man is there who desires life,
    and covets many days, that he may enjoy good?
Keep your tongue from evil,
    and your lips from speaking deceit.
Depart from evil, and do good;
    seek peace, and pursue it.
The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous,
    and his ears toward their cry.
The face of the Lord is against evildoers,
    to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.
When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears,
    and delivers them out of all their troubles.
The Lord is near to the brokenhearted,
    and saves the crushed in spirit.
Many are the afflictions of the righteous;
    but the Lord delivers him out of them all.
He keeps all his bones;
    not one of them is broken.
Evil shall slay the wicked;
    and those who hate the righteous will be condemned.
The Lord redeems the life of his servants;
    none of those who take refuge in him will be condemned.'
~ Psalm 34 
by Jeffrey McPheeters

Special thanks to photographer Jeffrey McPheeters for permission to use his photos (captions also added by him). You can find his website with more beautiful images here. His is also the main image at the top of my blog.

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