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Chelan Harkin…You Don’t Have to Believe in God

May be an image of sky, tree and body of water
You don’t have to believe in God
but please collapse in wonder
as regularly as you can

try and let your knowledge
be side swiped by awe
and let beauty be so persuasive
you find yourself willing
to lay your opinions at her feet

Darling, you don’t have to believe in God
but please pray
for your own sake
great prayers of thanks
for the mountains, the great rivers
the roundness of the moon
just because they’re here at all
and that you get to know them
and let prayer bubble up in you
as a natural thing
like song in a bird

You don’t have to have
a spiritual path
but do run
the most sensitive
part of your soul
over the soft curves
of this world
with as much tenderness
as you can find in yourself
and let her edgeless ways
inspire you to discover more

just find a way
that makes you want to yield
yourself
that you may be more open
to letting beauty fully
into your arms

and feel some sacred flame
inside of you that yearns toward
learning how to build a bigger
fire of love in your heart

You don’t have to believe in God
but get quiet enough to remember
we really don’t know a damn thing
about any of it
and if you can, feel a reverence to be part
of This Great Something
whatever you want to call it
that is so much bigger
and so far beyond
the rooftops of all
our knowing

—Chelan Harkin, Susceptible to Light

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