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The Gift of Poetry


like music to my ears.

Metaphor and simile


Faith explained

in a layman’s terms,

words rhyming

with the right timing.

Like an instrument

that hits all the notes.

Strumming along

or a quick jolt.

Christ is born

Came to bring us along.

“Oh, what Joy!”

becomes our song.

For over 10 years I have been attending retreats at the Jesuit Retreat Center as one of my spiritual practices. Still in isolation this December, I attended the Jesuit Retreat Center’s Christmas Oasis retreat on Zoom. Father Auther shared several poems with us and gave us 20 minutes to pray and reflect on them.

The poem that moved me the most was one in which we viewed a video of the poet presenting his poem, “Christmas Poem: The Gift” by Darrell Stephen. As I meditated on the poet’s dramatic presentation, a poem of my own bubbled up. What came forth was a burst of appreciation for the gift of poetic expression itself.

This is the second retreat that I’ve attended with Fr. Auther where he uses poetry as the springboard into a spiritual experience. This method of poetry, pausing and reflecting moves me deeply. I will continue to take the plunge! I believe that there will be a similar retreat for Easter. I look forward to seeing you then!

—Lydia A. Marrufo, December 2022

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