At Caritas



I gaze
through the undergrowth
into deeper woods.

Redwoods rise,
limbs link tree
to brother tree,
climbing high
to the bright
coastal fog.

Walking out
I see the three,
still as lawn ornaments,
frozen in motion,
by my sudden form.

They stand and gaze
and reassured
by my stasis,

at last with lazy gait
back they move
into the nodding

(3 May 2016)


to the center


Photo: Brian Federle, “Night”, 2014

constant hum,
music of days to
night fading; the right note, only
song you know; sum of your days, falling, falling to night.

to the
center, to
the black place to wait
for Him. Don’t call out in fear for
there’s nobody there but you and He, so silent be

how His song
fills your darkness with
light; smile at Him, your familiar
bright friend, and no longer will you fear your emptiness.

(23 Dec 2013)

In Contemplation of Seeking


….contemplation is simply the “experience” …. of God in a luminous darkness which is the perfection of faith illuminating our inmost self….. a flash of the lightning of divinity piercing the darkness of nothingness and sin. Not something general and abstract, but something, on the contrary, as concrete, particular, and “existential” as it can possibly be. It is the confrontation of man with his God… Thomas Merton, The Inner Experience: Notes on Contemplation
In my darkness I seek you
through deep caverns I run;
my dying flesh yearns for
your fierce, piercing love.

Through darkness I see
you’re glowing so bright,
but always receding,
deeper than night.

I fear that I’ll falter,
betrayed by frail will
when softly you whisper
“my child, just be still.”



Photo: Brian Federle, Pacifica Evening, 2014

In the psalms of night birds
in the bright morning trees,
I hear your song echoing,
overwhelming me.

Always above me,
around and below,
inside me your love’s
a constant glow.

In warm summer’s ocean,
in the soft breath of night
I sway in the rhythm
of  passionate life.

Ohio Winter


1 Snow Bunting, Delaware Co

Ohio stretches
endlessly blue

like the infinite wind
sightless and cold

piercing my
coatless soul

like the agonized snows
of spring.

(20 July 2016)

after blue day



night rises
from dark soil
slowly filling
the space between
slender blades
spreading its
ink over windows,
eaves, still trees
until the earth
becomes one
with the