Music for the Days of Awe at CBI
Rabbi Brant Rosen's "Wrestling In the Daylight"

A poem of praise by Anne Sexton

There's an Anne Sexton poem which a friend shared with me some time ago, and which has been sitting in a file on my desktop ever since. I open it from time to time, and reread it, and am reminded of how much I love it. Today I wanted to share it with y'all.


Welcome Morning

There is joy
in all:
in the hair I brush each morning,
in the Cannon towel, newly washed,
that I rub my body with each morning,
in the chapel of eggs I cook
each morning,
in the outcry from the kettle
that heats my coffee
each morning,
in the spoon and the chair
that cry "hello there, Anne"
each morning,
in the godhead of the table
that I set my silver, plate, cup upon
each morning.
All this is God,
right here in my pea-green house
each morning
and I mean,
though often forget,
to give thanks,
to faint down by the kitchen table
in a prayer of rejoicing
as the holy birds at the kitchen window
peck into their marriage of seeds.
So while I think of it,
let me paint a thank-you on my palm
for this God, this laughter of the morning,
lest it go unspoken.
The Joy that isn't shared, I've heard,
dies young.


I particularly love the part of the poem which begins "All this is God." And "I mean / though often forget / to give thanks[.]" And "as the holy birds at the kitchen window / peck into their marriage of seeds." And the notion of painting a thank-you on my palm for God. Like mehndi, maybe. Or the mnemonic device of tying a string around one's finger (which is one of the ways I like to think about tefillin, too.) I hope this one speaks to y'all, too.