Spiritual Poetry~

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posted on Dec, 7 2003 @ 07:41 PM
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This poem mentions the traditional belief that when the Antichrist goes out to do battle with the last Christians, he will come up to the furrow which St. Seraphim dug around the Diveevo convent and the Mother of God sanctified by passing through it, and will not be able to step over it.
Then the convent, together with all its inhabitants, will be taken up to heaven.)

Once again the roads and byways
Are all filled with ardent prayer…
‘Tis the pilgrims that are coming,
With bright face, on winged feet…
Here’s the trench, - be silent, reverent –
It is waiting for the battle,
It is waiting for the angel,
With his fiery, conquering sword.
Lightly stepped the Theotokos,
As she trod along this furrow…
No one saw – only the elder
Watched the light celestial passing.
Since that time this grace-filled furrow
Sings to us of good eternal,
Of a new-found gift from heaven,
Summons us to take this path.

- Nadezhda Mering

* * *
Forests and fields, blessings on you!
Blessings on hills, on vales and rills,
On freedom and on skies of blue!
Blessings upon my pilgrim’s staff,
Blessings on this bedraggled sack,
And on the vastness of the steppes,
The sun’s bright light, the dark of night,
The narrow, lonely, winding track
Beneath this beggar’s steps!
I bless each grass-blade ‘neath the sun
And every star above.
O, if my soul could be but one
With all of you within my love,
And I could lock in my embrace,
All friends, all foes, my brothers all
And everything on this earth’s face!

- Count A.K. Tolstoy
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic.


GOD IS IN EVERY PLACE AND THING . . .



* * *
God is in every place and thing,
Not only in our lucky star,
Not only in the fragrant flower,
Not just in joys sweet dreamings bring,
But also in the dark of poverty,
The sightless terror of our vanity,
In hurtful things, where light is not,
In things to bear which is our lot…
God’s in the tears of our pain,
The wordless sorrow of goodbyes,
The faithless seekings of our brain,
In suffering itself is God.
It is through life upon this sod
That we must reach the unknown land,
Where with the crimson trail of nails
Lord Christ will touch the wounds of man.
And that is why all flesh must die,
And why God is in all that is.

- Prince Vladimir Paley
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic.

Prince Vladimir Paley, member of the Russian Imperial family and cousin to the Tsar-Martyr Nicholas II, spiritually inherited the divine gift of poetry from another royal poet – the Grand Duke Konstantin Konstantinovich Romanov – known under the initials “K.R.” On July 5/18, 1917, together with the latter’s sons – Ioann, Igor and Konstantin Konstantinovichi, and the Grand Duchess Elizabeth and nun Barbara, Prince Vladimir Paley was thrown by the godless into the mine at Alapayevsk, thus earning for himself the crown of a New Martyr.



THE ROYAL WAY



For all who sorrow, oh Most Pure One,
To be so meek as to descend
From throne and in the cellar of death to end -
So thus begins the “royal way” for each
Of us for the kingdom of God to reach

And for this earthly kingdom to forsake.
There is no other way for us to take,
But the shortest path
Of the meekest Tsar!

Seeing the future in what came before,
When dead was Russia and the Tsar was slain,
Seeing that neither we may yet restore,

Let us be meek… God’s wisdom will decide
What was in vain and what was not in vain.
Let us be meek and in God’s love abide.

Let us be meek, so that the people are
Once more made worthy of their Tsar,
And Russia is restored to them again.

- I. Grachev
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic

The following poem, in a delightful homespun manner, talks about various saints who are celebrated in August (new style): the Prophet Elias on the 2nd, Saint Mary Magdalene on the 4th, the holy Princes Boris and Gleb on the 6th, and the feast of the Holy Mother of God – Her Dormition – on the 28th.



The Holy Virgin scolded Elias:
- Why don’t you clean up after yourself, grandpa!
Look at the mess you have made!
What have you done on your namesday?
The whole sky is in heaps and piles,
You’ve thrown cloud on cloud and left them there.
Here’s a broom, come sweep it up.

Elias frowns after his namesday feast,
Doesn’t say anything, just scowls.
Then he shrugs his shoulders and goes off,
Goes to put his thunders away in a box.

The Holy Virgin looked into the list of saints -
Whom should She call, who is close?
She calls upon two brothers, two knights:
- Gleb and Borisko, come over here
To clean up the sky, to sweep it up!
Boris and Gleb shook their heads:
- We are soldiers, Mother, we are warriors!
We are comfortable with a sword or a lance,
But we wouldn’t know how to use a broom.

The Holy Virgin thumbed the pages,
Looked further on in the list.
- Magdalene! - She cried, - come and help!
Take the broom and sweep up the sky.

- Mistress! Tomorrow is my namesday,
And I am all decked out, Mistress:
In my left hand I’m holding a pitcher of myrrh,
This pitcher is called an alabaster!
In my right hand I have a red-colored egg,
The one which I gave to Caesar for Easter…
So both my hands are taken up!

The Holy Virgin sighed lightly.
She didn’t ask anyone else, just took the broom.
A quiet white trail filled the sky.
The Most-Pure sweeps the sky cleanly.

The weather will be fair.

OH, ALL-HYMNED ONE!



For all who sorrow, oh Most Pure One,
Who art the gleam of tears all trembling in their eyes,
To Whom turn all those who feel quite undone,
For all who toil, oh Sharer of their sighs,
Who from all other chosen wert by God,
As the brightest saint Who this earth has trod,
To bear the One Who cannot be expressed,
To bear Him Whom God hath made manifest,
Who art raised higher than the Cherubim,
Transfigured well above the Seraphim,
Oh star of heaven – bright for all eternity,
Oh star of miracles upon this earth proclaimed,
Undying flower of incorruptibility,
Oh Burning Bush which burns, yet whole itself remains,
Light of salvation, light which never dies,
Oh earthly depth which fathoming defies,
Who art of all the chosen loving peace,
The comforter of all those who are banished,
The source of sweetness of those who are famished,
Of those in pain bright joy of prompt release,
In times of triumph, times of tribulation
Divine protection, shield of all salvation,
All-Hymned One, plead for those who’ve lost their way,
All-Hymned One, pray for those who’ve gone astray.


- V. Utrenev
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic


THE SILENCE OF CHRIST




Christ with Pontius Pilate. When the cunning Pharisee
Insidiously tested Christ,
And when the villain wished to stone
To death a maid who had transgressed -
Christ bowed down and His silence kept…

When Pilate in his inquisition
Before Him stood in all his might,
And by one question let Him see
His wish to save Him from His plight -
Christ only watched and silence kept…

When He beneath His thorny crown
Came out before the angry crowd,
With crimson blood upon His face,
And when He felt the sting of canes -
Christ, as before, His silence kept…

When at long last His body maimed
Was crucified upon the cross,
And all the boundless wickedness
Was driven home with hammer’s blows -
“Forgive them, Father!” - He exclaimed.


- A. Korovay-Metelitskiy
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic




O, MY LORD GOD



* * *
Why cannot I take up Thy chains,
Lord God, and bear them as my own!
Why cannot I endure Thy pain,
Accept Thy Cross upon me lain,
And on my head Thy thorny crown!

If I but could in veneration
With my lips touch Thy holy robe,
Or dusty traces of Thy feet,
O, my Lord God, that art my hope,
My strength, my shield against defeat!

I would give all my meditations
To Thee, the blessing of my songs,
Thoughts of my days, my vigils long,
And every heartbeat I would render,
And my whole soul to Thee surrender…


- Count Aleksey Tolstoy
Poem translated by Kosara Gavrilovic




CHRIST IS RISEN!



The night still waited for the gift of grace -
A night of mysteries and earthly woes.
A host of stars sailed through the boundless space,
Filling the quiet with their sparkling glow.
Still silent were the celestial lyres’ strains,
And yet an unseen hand had touched their strings,
And down the starry path into the world of pain
An angel came - tidings of joy to bring
And to erase the brand of evil counsel’s shame.
From the tomb’s entrance he removed the stone.
His countenance shone brightly like the sacred flame.
His eyes were bolts of lightning in a storm.
Then “Christ is risen!” heard the world for the first time,
That sound ineffable of the heavenly choir,
And on the earth the bells of night began to chime.
Since that night “Christ is risen!” sings the world entire…

- V. Utrenev
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic




REPENTANCE



Lord!
Thou art here,
Invisible,
And everywhere.
Thou givest love to us,
Forgiveness of our sins, and peace.
Thou hearest us, such wretched sinners,
Inviting us to Thine divine feast.

Feeble are we,
And naked,
And besmirched,
Full of forgetfulness,
Ingratitude and filth.
And yet with hope we pray to Thee:
Cleanse us, our Lord God, and redeem.

O, hear the prayers of Thy saints,
Who pray for us, lost deep in sin.
For the sake of their meek and saintly lives,
Wash clean with tears our blackened souls.

O, let our contrite cry reach Thee!
Hear us and keep us in Thy sight!
We pray, we beg despairingly:
Hear us, our Lord God, and redeem.

Our deeds show up our words’ futility,
But the Prodigal Son’s footsteps we trace,
To return to Thee in all humility,
And fall on our knees before Thy face.

- Deacon Andre Rudenko
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic




IN WINTER

The quietude
Of mute and tranquil wilderness!
The brilliance
Of meadows blanketed by snow!
The purity
Of limpid waters turned to ice!
The loveliness
Of groves and forests iced with rime!
How exquisite
The magic sights of wintertime!
Sleep, oh my soul,
As sleep the snowdrifts, ponds and birch…
Oh, learn to fathom
Nature’s stern serenity,
Wherein reside
All bliss and earth’s felicity.
Brighter than snow
May all thy dreams and visions be,
And purer than ice
Thy heart’s impassioned aspirations.
Let winter teach thee,
By its exquisite paucity,
To clothe thyself
In spirit’s beauty incorporeal.

- K. R.
(Grand-Duke Konstantin Romanov)
Poem translated by Kosara Gavrilovic


THE FOREST MONASTICS



Deep in the forest I recall one night.
A lonely skete gleamed like the Milky Way,
A single bell’s ringing rose through the mist
And marked the passing of the dying day.
Beneath the benediction of the bell,
The pines, erect and tall, motionless stayed.
Before the ancient icons of the saints
The forest elders stood there long and prayed.
In that vast sea of forest peace, remain
The monks like forms of other-worldly life.
There is no grief, no groans of human pain,
No age-long enmities, no hurt, no strife.
All that is left behind, outside the Pale –
The agony of years, all gone to waste,
The tears. Abandoned also was the trail
Of days whose very trace is here erased.
And when again the sun sends forth its rays,
Into God’s Garden, which no eye can see,
This forest turns. A myriad-voiced praise
Is raised and with the incense of each tree
Sent to the Sun of all Eternity.

- V. Utrenev.
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic.




O LORD, THOU WISHEST ME . . .



O Lord, Thou wishest me to grow,
As does in spring a tree,
And bear my cross, not drag it low,
Along my way to Thee;
That I should rise after I fall,
Prepared to wage Thy war,
Stay on the course and do it all
In prayer and in awe;
That every day in Thee I trust,
Concealing nought from Thee,
And that Thy Holy Spirit must
Be never lost to me.

- Anonymous Moscow bard.
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic.




CHRIST IS RISEN!



When of salvation there is seemingly no hope
And you are overpowered by a wicked demon,
Say to yourself these words of joy and cheer:

Christ is risen!
Do not say “everything is lost”
And “miracles no longer can be seen” -
The Lord has plucked from death its sting:

Christ is risen!
When all around you darkest tempests rage
And rays of hope have disappeared,
Do not despair and bow your head:

Christ is risen!
The soul is filled with radiant light,
The heart yearns upward into heaven
When angels joyously proclaim:

Christ is risen!
- A. Korovay-Metelitsky.




FROM THE APOCALYPSE



I knock and wait at the door of your inn,
Open the door and let Me in.
I’m naked, weak, the lowest of low.
My road is hard. Far must I go.
Penniless beggar through the world I roam,
Knock and wait at many a home.
Who’ll hear My voice? Who’ll take My load,
And bid Me enter his abode?
To such a one I’ll come and call him Mine,
Break bread with him and share the wine.
You’re weak, exhausted from labors and strain.
With Me your strength you will regain.
With My hand I shall dry your tears of pain
And you will never cry again.
I shall console you, your pain I’ll feel,
And share with you your evening meal.
I knock and wait at the door of your inn.
Open the door and let me in.


- K. R.(Grand-Duke Constantine Romanov).
Poem translated by Kosara Gavrilovic.



TO THE TSAR-MARTYR


He is alive,
He gazes down upon us,
He calls us with his heavenly voice,
Our conscience yearning to awaken….

Tsar-Martyr Nicholas.
Calmly He bore his cross,
So bloody and so cruel,
And our native land
From bloodshed he can free….

He is alive,
He waits,
He calls,
He calls and pleads for our tears….

With his myrrh-streaming icon
He sends a message to us here
From the divine heights
Of the Heavenly King….

He, earthly king,
Loving us even now,
Together with his holy Family
Offers holiness to us….

Will we respond to Him?
And to his Family…and to God?
Kneeling,
Crying,
Tearfully
Pleading?

Or shall we continue,
Drowsily passing by,
To yawn and languish -
While having such a
Mighty intercessor
Before the throne of the Eternal King?

- Deacon Andre Rudenko.




A PRAYER



Forgive, o Lord, all my transgressions,
My failing spirit in me renew.
Let me endure all tribulations
In hope, and faith, and love of You.

I’m not afraid to suffer passion.
Of love divine the pledge is pain,
But do allow my soul impassioned
In contrite tears to wash my stain.

My heart’s observe the poverty
And give it Magdalene’s bright fire.
Give me the Baptist’s purity

And let me tread my path entire,
Bearing the cross of my decay,
Before the feet of Christ to lay.

- I. I. Kozlov (1779 -1840)
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic.



THE NINTH WAVE



The ninth wave came, and angry was the sea.
The wrath of waves made feeble minds afraid.
The saving land was lost in distant mists.
The wail was awesome of the powers below.
The gale clawed at the sails. The breakers warred.
Whole precipices filled with fury heaved.
And He just stood, the Lord of sea and land,
The King of silence, Ruler of the waves.
Quite overwhelmed then, an apostle fell
Before His feet and fearfully exclaimed:
“It is the end! O, Teacher, we are lost!”
“O, ye of little faith,” said He, “wherefore
Do you doubt and bow your heads so low?
Where there’s no faith, there fear begins to rule.”
Imperiously He stretched His right arm
And ordered the sea and wind to cease,
Put out the flame of lightning in the waves
And waved asunder the shroud of clouds.
Then a great silence fell upon the sea
And a great quiet ruled the vasty deep,
As though the Angel of Peace passed above
And through the vale of evil down below.
Who is He Who can tame the rage of seas,
Command obedience of the very winds?
Who in the distance weaves the crown of stars
And sees the Satan fall into the dark?
My Lord and God, when shipwreck threatens me,
Let Thy right hand direct and guide my bark,
So that it may avoid the evil spells,
So that the foe confounds me not upon
The endless sea of earthly woes.

- V. Utrenev.
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic.







GOD’s COMMANDMENTS


Ye have heard what hath been said by the ancients: thou shalt not kill;
and whosoever shall kill - shall be in danger of judgment.
But I say unto you: in wrath and hate
There is no less ill feeling than in murder.
Remember also that each word you utter
Shall be recorded on the judgment slate.

Ye have heard what hath been said by the ancients:
thou shalt not commit adultery.
But I say unto you: if you but let
Your unclean eye towards a woman stray,
Uncleanliness will so your soul beset,
You’d wish your hand would pluck your eye away.

Again, ye have heard what hath been said by the ancients: thou shalt not foreswear thyself, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths.
I urge you not to swear at any price,
Not by the earth, nor by God’s throne - the skies.
Let simple yea or nay from you suffice,
Because all else is naught but Satan’s lies.

Ye have heard that it hath been said:
an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.
But I beg you not increase the wrong.
Make peace with enemies in any way.
Whatever’s done to you, stay true and strong,
And never wrong with injury repay.

Ye have heard that it hath been said:
Thou shalt love thy neighbor and hate thine enemy.
But I exhort you: also love your foe,
Pray for the bad as you do for the just.
It is the pagans, after all, who must
Love only those they resemble and know.

And so, be ye perfect as your Heavenly Father is perfect!

- Anonymous Moscow bard.
Poem translated by Kosara Gavrilovic.

TO THEE !

To Thee the seas sing praises, Lord my God.
In front of Thee the vasty deep grows quiet,
The constellations shed their trembling gleam,
The ceaseless singing rings of starry choirs.
To Thee sings every nature’s spring and stream.
All rosied over with the dawn’s soft glow,
The lofty mountains lift their voice in laud,
Ashimmer with their never melting snow.
The woods are humming Wisdom from Above,
The blooms send up their fragrance to Thy Throne,
The dew informs of Thine eternal love,
As does the dark of nights, the light of days.
The midnight sheen of the unending frost,
The cliffs, the crags in misty vapor lost,
The blossoming and dying of a flower,
The caravans of springtime clouds - all praise
Thee. Every monster shall before Thee cower,
And made aware of Thy thrice-holy Grace,
Hosanna sing the oceans all around.
I am an earth-bound worm before Thy face,
But from my breast to Thee, my God, resounds
This sacred hymn, unlike all earthly sounds.

- V. Utrenev.
Poem translated by Kosara Gavrilovic.


SPIRITUAL WARFARE



So once again, as do the birds,
We shall to Lord God sing,
And constantly with praying words
Bear everything.

Again the sky is covered
With smoke of our defeats.
Should joy in dreams be offered,
Distrust - it is deceit.

You are again in bitter strife,
Again do arrows fly,
As if by right you cling to life,
Forgetting one must die.

But death does not appear to come.
It will not come, not now.
Who is creeping with such stealth
All through this foggy slough?

It is not death, but apparition,
Satanic lies, delusion.
It is the fallen angels singing,
And born of lust confusion.

Observe the fasts with all your might,
For to avoid the fall.
Pray constantly, pray day and night,
And bear it, bear it all.

You must believe in the renewal
Of waters, earth, solidity.
You must believe that death will die,
Snows gleam again with purity.

But all you need to do is pray
And bear it all.
Again and always you must pray
And bear it, bear it all.

- Monk Vsevolod (Filipyev).
Translated by Kosara Gavrilovic

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