On The Prayer Trail in Ordinary Time – a poem by Denise Pendleton

On The Prayer Trail in Ordinary Time

	 	  Transfiguration Hermitage, 2021

My skis become my wings the snow 
my sky as I fly through it. 
My arms my legs reach, pull 

and kick as I draw one breath in, let one 
breath out, this motion on this first Sunday 
after Epiphany lifting me closer to heaven 

where I am touched by the radiance 
they say can be found there. 
Who cares now what I have left behind 

it is gone into the past
where I’ve done what I could.  Gone 
are the must do’s, what 

I could do, what I haven’t done
to mend my ways or help 
with the troubles of this world.

How I pity those who plod on snowshoes while I 
glide in this element part air made from what 
the sky has given of itself to lift me 

closer to heaven.  Its jewels 
spread before me on snow sunlit
all around the trees.  Their dark bodies 

stripped of leaves or regal in evergreen offer
their own silent witness to my body this gift 
I praise now steering itself between earth and heaven 

spilling out my bodily prayer, silent 
but for the scuff of skis across snow 
its blanket smoothed over winter ground 

otherwise ugly and barren
but now given this icing 
most divine, most extraordinary.

Denise Pendleton is a recipient of The Jinx Walker Poetry Prize of the Academy of the American Poets.  Her poems have appeared in the book collection, American Sports Poems, and various journals including Northwest ReviewTar River Poetry,Goose River Anthology and Kerning.   Pendleton coordinates the local literacy program, teaches college writing and visits the sanctuary of her backwoods most every day.

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s