Closer To Cold

Good Grandmother Autumn,
slowly, serenely,
You open Your cloak.
Orange, umber, crimson
to enfold us in the wisdom
of waning day; the pulling-in
of the soft blanket of gentle night.

You gather summer’s
leaking light, transmuted
and mellow; sun’s rambunctious
radiant yellow, distilled
to rich and potent gold.
To glow and to guide,
as You graciously stride,
softly singing.

Love’s Lantern
You hold at Your side;
steady, swinging,
over hill and hollow;
calling us to follow You,
closer to cold
in Earth’s Soulful Descent .

To the quiet concealing,
the kindly revealing,
the fullness of feeling;
the hiddenness of healing
all that is weary, hurting,
broken, and bent.

Hail to the losing!
Hail to the leaving!
Hail to the grieving,
the groaning, the growing!

Hail to Grandmother Autumn
and Her Knowing
that delving the darkness
is time well spent.

~Cheryl Anne Maris
accepting Grandmother Autumn’s invitation

Fall Away

My heart has gone
quiet within me-
It could be
Gentle Autumn’s gathering 
subtly around me,
and all the more noticeably
settling in my breath and bones.

My summer has gone
but I do not grieve.

I have waited
for these damp, dark days
since my youth, preferring
a deeper, Silent Truth
to the glaring gaze
and loud displays of voices
singing their own importance.

Willingly and with delight
I sink into this muted moment-
out of mind and out of sight,
even to myself-
Surrendering to
rich earthen hues,
encircled by the greys and blues
and shroud of clouded mist.

I have waited
for a seasoned kiss-
a long simmering,
full-bodied brew~
Autumn’s Gift;

I have waited for You
to sweeten, soften,
gently subdue the last of
my struggling strength.

With Love and Trust
I welcome You-
invite You into Heart and Hearth,
to become part of my breath and bones,
my damp and dark; my soil, my soul, my Home…

Till at the dying of my day,
in humility and hope I pray
that Your Loving Presence
may be the One Sweet Thing
which does not recede from me
when all the seasons fall away.

~Cheryl Anne Maris 
from the autumnal archives 

She Knew

I did not know 
beyond the practicalities 
and the call 
of the Wise Moon. 

I could not see;
blinded by the magnitude 
of the moment’s brightness,
and the intoxication 
of new autumnal air.

So unaware of 
the depth and darkness 
of the Sea that lay before me. 
I did not know,
but She did. 

She knew that 
the Wise Moon’s 
would require 
a fearsome falling.

She knew that
the Sea’s 
meant complacency’s 

She knew all
the monsters 
and difficulty 

She knew how long.
She knew how far. 
Great Stella Maris!
Sea’s Bright Star! 
She saw it all

But only smiled
upon Her 

through all
the recklessness 
and roaming
toward her full
and final Homing. 

Mother of Christ, 
Star of the Sea;
pray for the wanderers;
for me. 

~Cheryl Anne Maris 
Feast of Our Lady, Stella Maris 2022
She knew! 🌟

Your Name, O Mary

Your Name,
O Mary,
is to me
a Garden Where
I walk in Peace

Your Name,
O Mary,
is to me
a Rose Whose Fragrance
does not cease

Your Name,
O Mary,
is to me
a Cloak
of Comfort and of Grace

Your Name,
O Mary,
is to me
a safe and healing
Hiding Place

Your Name,
O Mary,
is to me
a Fortress
that is sure and strong

Your Name,
O Mary,
is to me
the Home and Hearth
Where I belong.

~Cheryl Anne Maris
Feast of the Most Holy Name of Mary

Bright Promise

The Light softens towards 
tones more muted and Michaelean.
The Green, wistfully waning,
grateful for days of
summer splendor;
aware of its fragility
and fading.

Treetops, as yet
full and shading,
shed their first
tender yellow tears.
Leaves too-soon tired
from too-tight clinging
for fear of falling.

Now ready for singing
the song of Freedom’s flutter
to faithful ground.
They are first
to hear Her calling.
Met with Mercy’s
warm befriending.

They kiss the Face
of One Ascending.
Full of Grace!
Forever Blessed!
Dressed in raiment of
Great Gold Sun; Bright
Promise of the Holy One!

Beyond mortal coil
and fading green,
the Angels bear
Their Coming Queen.
‘Neath Raphael’s Wing
to heal and hide;
Our Lady of Assumptiontide!

~Cheryl Anne Maris
Eve of the Feast of the Assumption 2022

My little Assumptiontide altar. 🌹

The Mystery

Sacred Simplicity 
You Are The Mystery
Tender Love of God
Ever-Present, Inextricable.

Soft Silence
Resting beneath ruminations
Humble Heart
hidden in complications.

Your Peace
A Perpetual Invitation
To surrender
To slowing.

The Gift of Knowing
Source, Sense, and Soul
Infinite Embrace of
Unfailing Love.

~Cheryl Anne Maris
words upon waking


Beloved, You are
wax and wick;
the candle unlit
as I sit bereft.

Beloved, You are
books unread,
tears not shed,
swallowed songs.

Beloved, You are
prayers waylaid,
paths forsaken;
poems abandoned.

~Cheryl Anne Maris
in an apophatic embrace