Hallelujah! They have risen!
Snowdrop, crocus, bearded iris.
Exult and throw your happy arms upward!
The trillium are carpeting the forest floor.
The tulips, triumphant and glorious in rainbow rows,
rise up singing “our cups overflow.”
The creatures dress in their feast-day finest,
the loons and penguins in black tie and tux.
Hallelujah ushers forth from lips and beaks
as quacks, warbles, howls and hoots
fill the forests and fields with hymns of joy.
Let the Earth be glad and the sky shower praise
for the riot of color in her cloak of glory:
purple martin, scarlet tanager,
red-winged blackbird, yellow-bellied flycatcher,
great blue heron, snowy egret,
ruby-crowned kinglet, indigo bunting.
It is right to give thanks and to pray for the endangered,
relatives among us but not for long:
Bengal Tiger, Blue Whale, Leatherback Sea Turtle,
Asian Elephant, Java Rhinoceros, Mountain Gorilla,
Snow Leopard, Red Wolf, California Condor.
It is fitting that we mourn our relations now extinct
though the list is long, let us name a few:
Chinese River Dolphin, Japanese Sea Lion, Caribbean Monk Seal,
Cascade Mountain Wolf, Sardinia Lynx, Bali Tiger,
Mexican Grizzly, Eastern Cougar, Black Rhinocereros, Koala Lemur,
Barbary Lion, Laughing Owl.
For all that dies and rises, we bend our knee.
As creatures of the Cosmos, progeny of the Universe,
we give thanks and rejoice for the Flame within us.
With the bald eagles and hairy frogfish,
with the furry kittens and spiny hedgehogs,
with the runny-nosed bison and red-nosed reindeer
we stand in awe as Earth spins, tides change,
hearts beat, eyes see, hands comfort.
We who believe in Life give Life.
In adoration, we sing, we bow,
we weep tears of joy and sorrow.
This feast marks the life of a prophet
and teacher who said, more than once,
“what you see me do, you can do, and more.”
That is what this praise is for.
What rises today and every new dawn
are these words that remind us:
There is nothing in the world we cannot do.
Let us rise, let us pray, let us sing—
and let us take this world into our loving arms.
© Jan Phillips 2016