Monday, December 31, 2012


This flame, this ribbon, this branch, this windblown cloudbank covering up the sun.
This song, this crevice, this hammer, this net,
this scrap of orange fabric in the grass.
This pause, this shoelace, this errant ladybug with distended wings crawling across the soft gray crawlspace of my pillow.
This hymn, this bird, this bit of news I wish I hadn't overheard but did.
This wasp fallen into wine.
This lost sentence of love trembling with need,
this half-acre of of sawdust and clay,
this trembling oak leaf suspended by nothing visible from a tender twig in the small gray rain.
This crow, this dog, this laughing coyote, this shed skin that wants to find itself a home in dirt.
This choir stall, this stairwell, this echo of an antiphon in darkness.
This shoe, this hearth, this rock, this bell,
this dazzle of lonesome verbiage truncated into a punctuation full of fire and the scent of piney heartwood as it catches.
This pen, this slip of paper made from sand and bloodroot, wanting nothing but the touch of a thought too small to shout, too big to whisper, too unrepentant to have it out with God,
too shy and wild to say its name in any place where anyone might hear.

©Laura Sorrells 2012
all rights reserved

This is another poem from Thanksgiving week of this year, when I was on retreat at Gethsemani.

Monday, December 10, 2012

the smoke from it sings

My listening heart
dares to praise
the perpetual, tender
roar of your
fire. Sometimes
the smoke from it
sings. Not with
words, but something
seen, a quiet
shadow; or tasted,
the unguarded psalm
of pomegranate
or river.
Nothing else
steals from me
so gently.

-----©Laura Sorrells 2012
all rights reserved

I wrote this while on retreat at Gethsemani Abbey the week of Thanksgiving 2012.

Monday, December 3, 2012

that conversation

Something in this silence
needs to be loved.
Its breath wants
the careful religion
of attention. Each
smoky sigh deepens
the wordless blessing
of this ache. My eyes wait
in the dark for the tender
call of Nothing.
Anywhere can be the
meeting-place of
hymn and emptiness,
the marriage bed
of praise and distance.
Listen for that
conversation, and
be ready
to leave your life.

©Laura Sorrells 2012
all rights reserved

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About Me

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Georgia, United States
I live at the edge of the forest in a little town in the north Georgia mountains. I teach sixth grade Language Arts and am writing a memoir of sorts about family, spirituality, and narrative. I am also exploring a possible writing project having to do with contemporary lay contemplative experience and how it might be informed by the Desert Fathers and Mothers of early Christianity. I am a relatively recent convert to Roman Catholicism and an admirer of Pope Francis, Leonardo Boff, Joan Chittister, and Richard Rohr. I'm a Lay Associate of Our Lady of the Holy Spirit Monastery in Conyers, Georgia. I am interested in indigenous cultures, narratives, and spirituality, especially how these can inform my spirituality as a lay contemplative. I write, read, take pictures, play around with creating ephemera from paper and cloth and other organic things. I cook, hike, watch wildlife, and collect random bits of interesting oddness, both tangible and abstract. I am a seer of smallness and a caretaker of ridiculous minutiae. If you want, e-mail me at or