My rock, my sacred place,
absorbs my prayer - my gift to life.
Rock too, as all creation does,

gifts back - opens, breaks -
and yielding itself broken and inwardly exposed,
offers its hidden treasure
as prayerful gift of beauty.

Words and Image by Brother Anthony-Francis, Hermit
All Rights Reserved.

Breaking Locks

“… To live the life that I would love,
To postpone my dream no longer
But do at last what I came here for
And waste my heart on fear no more.”

John O’Donohue in “To Bless the
Space Between Us: A Book of Blessings, 2008

Image: Gary E. Smith (Photographer)
C. Robin Janning (Painter)

The seedy center of things

Look closely:
that darkness you sense
at the center of your being --
the stuff you build
a thousand fragile walls around,
hoping one will hold --
it's not a solid mass,
or writhing with snakes:
it's just a mass of seeds,
waiting to be born in you,
hoping for attention
-- a little sunlight, a little water --
eager to burst into glorious flower,
to stretch out petals of startling joy
and flutter in the breeze.
Take your pick; Grab one! Plant it NOW!

Words and image by Diane Walker

Collaborative Art

The image shown above is a collaboration between a photographer and a painter. While the mechanics of how a collaboration might proceed are many and varied, it seems that what is absolutely required is the ability to see beyond the individual heart and into the universal heart. When this happens, what is born of collaboration will be art that speaks more than one language.

Infinite possibilities exist. Which means nearly an infinite number of chance collaborations never happen. To me, it makes those that do happen...and that do work magically and wondrously...infinitely special.

Words and image by James Mangum (photographer)
and C. Robin Janning (painter)

A Radiant Oneness

We gather around
this table you set
and feel the spirit move like wind.

We float suspended
on the wine-dark sea,
holding hands and circling round,
synchronized swimmers in fluid motion,
each life a pattern,
detected only from above.

Fed by your color,
nurtured by your light
we breathe in the delicate perfume of oneness.

Words and image by Diane Walker

The Disappeared

The Art Blog at Episcopal Cafe

The Disappeared, an exhibition from The North Dakota Museum of Art (curated by Laurel Reuter) is introduced this week at Episcopal Cafe.

The work above, by Luis Gonzáles Palma, was given to the North Dakota Museum of Art in honor of Elizabeth Hampsten, a long-time professor of English at the University of North Dakota, who has dedicated her life to human rights and to preserving the life stories of little-known women. She has translated key human rights books from Spanish into English. Among them are Uruguay Nunca Mas: Human Rights Violations, 1972 - 1985, and, most recently, Truck of Fools by Carlos Liscano.

In this 1997 diptych, Empty Shirt, also by Luis Gonzáles Palma, one frame contains the frontal image of a Mayan woman, the second, an empty white shirt which stands in for the disappeared husband.

Read more here.

Images: Luis Gonzáles Palma

Last Night In Alaska

... the people, the place
joined to celebrate Eucharist
and light at Eagle Summit

Image: Bruce Gadwah, St. Matthew's, Fairbanks

Summer Solstice

"Solstice" by Roger Hutchison


Summer Solstice: The northern polar axis of the earth tilted most sunwards marks the advent of summer and long days of sunlight. Like the earth, may we bow before the spiritual sun, so that we are bathed always in its transformative light.

From George Harrison

"Here Comes the sun
Here comes the sun, and I say
It’s all right

Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes"

From Robert Louis Stevenson

"Great is the sun, and wide he goes
Through empty heaven with repose;
And in the blue and glowing days
More thick than rain he showers his rays.

Though closer still the blinds we pull
To keep the shady parlour cool,
Yet he will find a chink or two
To slip his golden fingers through.

The dusty attic spider-clad He,
through the keyhole, maketh glad;
And through the broken edge of tiles
Into the laddered hay-loft smiles.

Meantime his golden face around
He bares to all the garden ground,
And sheds a warm and glittering look
Among the ivy's inmost nook.

Above the hills, along the blue,
Round the bright air with footing true,
To please the child, to paint the rose,
The gardener of the World, he goes."

From The Rev. Scott Fisher

Thou who first placed us in a Garden, and who calls to us from an Easter garden, hear our prayer for, like the plants and flowers of the Earth, we seek Light. Thou, who speaks from Mountains and who walks with us through Lonesome valleys, at this turning of the Earth, we give you thanks for the Gift of Light, seen and unseen, and pray your Company until we come to that Country where there is no darkness at all. In your Name Lord Jesus, who reminded us that WE are the Light of the World, we do pray. Amen.

Photograph by The Rev. Scott Fisher


I say that we are wound
With mercy round and round
As if with air: the same
Is Mary, more by name.
She, wild web, wondrous robe,
Mantles the guilty globe,
Since God has let dispense
Her prayers his providence:
Nay, more than almoner,
The sweet alms’ self is her
And men are meant to share
Her life as life does air.

Words: Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844–89)
Image: Nuestra Senora del Carmen by James Mangum

Flavoring Eternity

From a drop of rain,
an ocean will emerge.
From one small seed
an entire vineyard grows.
From a grain of yeast
generations will be fed
with the risen bread.

In just this way,
that tiny glimpse you have of hope,
the smile you share,
the cheek you turn,
the wrong that you forgive,
or choose not to avenge:
each speck of love
you toss like spice
into the dish of life
enriches all,
giving each
the flavor of eternity.

Words and image by Diane Walker

Borderless World

The Art Blog at Episcopal Cafe

This week at Episcopal Cafe, the Art Blog features the work of artists and spouses Chuck Hoffman and Peg Carlson-Hoffman, who work side-by-side on the same canvas.
Image: Borderless World by Chuck Hoffman and Peg Carlson-Hoffman


Though you cannot hear the water or the wind,
you know they do not cease to exist.
And when the light is dying, you’re aware
that with the dawn the sun will rise again.
And though you cannot touch the air,
its spirit never fails to fill your lungs.
Just so, in that neverland beyond the stillness
where sight and sound
and breath and touch abate,
I wait for you with arms outstretched,
laden with unimaginable gifts.

Words and image by
Diane Walker

Seeing As Blessing

"May you recognize in your life the
presence, power, and light of your soul.

May you realize that you are never alone,
that your soul in its brightness and
belonging connects you intimately
with the rhythm of
the universe."

Words by John O'Donohue, in Anam Cara: A Book of Celtic Wisdom

Image: Photograph by Helen Belencan

Who Does She Think She Is?

The Art Blog at Episcopal Cafe

This week at Episcopal Cafe, Art Blog editor, Mel Ahlborn provides more than one answer to this post's question. Read it all HERE.

And to answer Mel's question: "Can You Name 5 Women Artists?" just take a look (right-hand column) at the list of our Contributors.

Click on the image above (a poster for the film) to go to the interactive "Who Does She Think She Is?" web site.


O Divine Artist,
whose brush creates for us
this perfect blush of burgundy,
these shades of green;
inscribing a delicate calligraphy
of light and shadow,
balanced each to each
as if to say: "See?"
Even a shadow can be beautiful;
even a tiny patch of sunlight
can reveal a moment of pure joy...

Let your divine artistry echo in us,
that what we paint or draw,
sing, play or dance --
with pigment, voice, or instrument;
through body, pen or camera --
that each uniquely rendered song of dark and light,
of shadow, shade and flame,
may allow some fortunate observer
to see the spark of divinity that ignites us all.

Words & Image by
Diane Walker