When after the Winter alarmin’,
The Spring steps in so charmin’,
So fresh and arch
In the middle of March,
Wid her hand St. Patrick’s arm on…
~Alfred Percival Graves
Spring has stepped in so charmin’ on this St. Patrick’s Day. The stars were shining bright last night and today is forecasted to have bits of sunshine. The luck of the Irish is with us today–that time of year we all celebrate the one-eighth Irish that’s in our blood. If you’ve been lucky enough to spend time on the Emerald Isle, the memory of its magic and charm can warm you in Winter alarmin’.
And, who doesn’t love those Irish Blessings. Here are some of my favorites.
When the first light of sun, Bless you. When the long day is done, Bless you. In your smiles and your tears, Bless you. Through each day of your years, Bless you.
May you always have these blessings. A soft breeze when summer comes. A warm fireside in winter. And always- the warm, soft smile of a friend.
These things, I warmly wish for you-
Someone to love,
Some work to do,
A bit of o’ sun
A bit o’ cheer
And a guardian angel
This winter, I’ve been reading John O’Donohue’s book, To Bless the Space Between Us, and it has given me, without any religious identification, a lovely way to look at this notion of blessing. He writes that “the word blessing evokes a sense of warmth and protection; it suggests that no life is alone or unreachable…it would be infinitely lonely to live in a world without blessing.”
“A blessing is a difficult form to render. I have endeavored to write them as poetically as possible, but they are not poems. A poem is an utterly independent linguistic object…in contrast, the blessing form has an eye to the outside in order to embrace and elevate whatever is happening to someone. It is a direct address, driven by immediacy and care.”
“We never see the script of our lives; nor do we know what is coming towards us, or why our life takes on this particular shape or sequence. A blessing is different from a greeting, a hug, a salute, or an affirmation; it opens a different door in human encounter. One enters into the forecourt of the soul, the source of intimacy and the compass of destiny.”
He goes on to say that we do not require a spiritual guide to give or receive blessings, but that we would be wise to bless ourselves and our loved ones as part of our daily lives. So, on this St. Patrick’s Day…
May your blessings outnumber the shamrocks that grow, and may trouble avoid you wherever you go.