Along the Way

Along the Way
Joseph Anthony Petro


Along the Way


I will fumble for the right words,
Old ideas I’ve built around how I think
Everything should go will crumble,
And there will be no doubt that again
And again I will stumble and fall.
I will bumble a big deal.
I will mumble telling the truth.
I will grumble when following
Someone else’s directions.
My thoughts will become entangled
In a jumble of feelings.
And through it all, the stomach of my soul
Will rumble with hunger for You, and You alone.
Along the way, which is of course, here and now,
The earth will be calling my name,
And as I draw closer to You, You will somehow
Tie heaven and earth together as I kneel
And allow my self to be lifted and placed
Securely in the lap of the way it is,
Where all of the fumbling and crumbling,
Stumbling and bumbling, mumbling
And grumbling, jumbling and rumbling
Will settle where it needs to be,
Which is in the sacrament
Of the present moment and me being





You and Our and the Magical Arithmetic of Hope

You and Our
And the Magical Arithmetic
Of Hope
Joseph Anthony

You and Our

And the Magical Arithmetic

of Hope


In the shared space pain takes up,
Camaraderie prevails.
And it isn’t so much
That the pain doesn’t matter,
Those partaking of this bitter bread
Give thanks for the nourishment it brings.
And even as they accept me
Into this holy fraternity,
This circle of understanding,
This affiliation of grace,
I stand myself apart and say: Your
Rooms, your fellowship,
My pain, your pain.
One of them brought this
To my attention and I am grateful.
So much depends upon unity,
Upon the shared understanding
That weaves through and through
Each agent of mercy, each emissary that carries
The gifts of sadness and transcendence.
And so I stand and take fledging steps
To the edge and then into
The Community of Our:
Our pain. Our rooms. Our healing.
And as I take my place amidst and among,
I sit neither below nor above,
I am simply one of the many,
One of a band that grows, like
Ripples in a pond,
Like the fragrance of honeysuckle in spring,
Like the good thoughts of forgiveness
And humility, like a song sung by the One
Who is the Ultimate Our and You and I
And We and Every Living Thing,
And on we go,
One tapestry of hope,
One table of plenty shared,
One perpetual thanksgiving
Of you becoming our
And our becoming more
Than the sum of its parts,
And the sum of its parts
Becoming the magical arithmetic
Of hope: things subtracted
Become the variables that give way
To the addition of constants
Like love, understanding, acceptance, humor,
And miracles, yes, miracles
Are a constant,
That when combined
Multiply a thousand fold, pressed down, shaken together,
And running over into a joy that equals
The priceless gift
Of serenity.


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