The Geese Flew Over My Heart: Poems for Prayer and Reflection


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Book Details

Format: Paperback (70 pages)

Publisher: Sacristy Press

Date of Publication:

ISBN: 978-1-78959-017-3

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This deeply personal and at times haunting collection of poems reflects the search for God in the pain and vulnerability of life, in human relationships, in nature and in the challenging aspects of life. The poems are prayerful and although personal, they speak of our common longing for meaning in life, and our desire for union, for relationship.

The poems offer a glimpse of the peace that comes from trust and self abandonment. They speak of compassion and empathy with the suffering of others and also of hope that springs from glimpsing an eternal purpose, life beyond this present moment.

Lyn McCrave has lived in Scotland for nearly 50 years and started writing poetry as a teenager. She is a retired doctor who is married with a family and practises Spiritual Accompaniment in the Ignatian tradition.

These poems are short, each one mostly contained on a single page; but the brevity is of a profound and concentrated kind. No word is wasted. It is a reminder of the pared down richness of many minimalistic art-works, not unlike the music of Anton Webern or Arvo Part. As we ponder each line, we become aware of someone searching for God in the pain and vulnerability of life, also in the joy and sacredness of close human relationships, as well as in the pathos of loss and grief. … Here is a rich seam of spiritual depth and mystery which reaches beyond the rationalising pragmatism of so much contemporary religious thought.

The Revd Harvey Richardson, The Methodist Recorder

This short book of poems is profoundly moving as the author shares her experiences of life and of God. Lyn does not shy away from the difficulties of faith: the times when it can be hard to see or experience God in the events unfolding in our lives; the times when God seems absent and we feel as if we walk through the wilderness alone. And yet when she has reached ‘the end, the hard place’, Lyn can eventually say, ‘Truly God is my rock and my strength’. This is a book for quiet reflective reading, taking time to savour the language as we move into prayer. A book to return to both when we need solace and when we want to celebrate God in our lives.

The Revd Elizabeth Clark, Country Way

A book of gentle and heartfelt poems: some are pure prayer. Many sing of the revelation of God through the natural world, or of God’s presence in times of sadness and times of joy. Some are imbued with the age-old metaphor (common to mystics of different faiths) of erotic love for the soul’s longing for and delight in the divine, and God’s delight in us. Some of the poems would make effective lead-ins for … periods of personal meditation.

If you seek poetic pyrotechnics or intricate language, you will be disappointed. Lyn’s language is simple, but beautifully evocative, with short lines and occasional use of rhyme. It is designed to focus mind and spirit, not display poetic virtuosity.

A book to savour, to read slowly, maybe only one poem a day, so that the words have a chance to resonate in the mind.

Michael Cayley, Julian Meetings magazine

This slim volume of poetry is written by a retired doctor with a deep spirituality inspired by the Ignatian tradition, who seeks to find God in all things. Originally from Liverpool, she has lived in Scotland for nearly 50 years. The words are stark at times as the journey of life – both joy and sadness – is explored along with relationships and aspects of God. Poetry lovers will appreciate the starkness and brevity of the words, whilst medics, nurses and those employed in the caring profession will appreciate many of the observations encountered on their professional journeys.

Lynne McNeil, Life and Work

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