Poems for the Luminous Mysteries

Pope Francis is calling on all Catholics to pray the rosary today. To help with that, here is a sonnet sequence for your meditation on the Luminous Mysteries.

“The First Luminous Mystery”

Water rushed by, the Light of the Sun reflected,

Light, and water, and the descent of the dove,

And a voice, a thunderous voice, which echoed above,

For God had come in form and place unexpected.

He hallowed the waters before he was rejected.

John buried Christ and brought him up resplendent.

The waters changed that day, were filled with love.

He cleansed the waters, which cleanse us and reprove,

He washed the waters on which we are dependent.

Every drink I take, and every time I wash,

The hallowed water enters into my life.

It doesn’t matter that I’m made from ash.

He hallowed dust, just as he hallowed strife.

This hallowed water brings me to the hallowing Christ.

 “The Second Luminous Mystery”

“They’re out of wine,” his mother said to him.

“Woman, what has that to do with me?”

But water comes again, to make us see.

“Do what he says,” as she draws the servants in.

“Draw the water, fill the cups to the brim.”

By his desire for festive joy, for free

He gave the gift of wine. Matrimony

And all other celebrations are blessed from within.

So I now sip my glass of red, a cabernet

Or Pinot Noir. And I participate

In that wedding feast, the one which called ahead,

To the paschal feast on that fateful Lenten day.

So I have drunk his blood in wine, and I ate

His flesh under the guise of humble bread.

 “The Third Luminous Mystery”

From mountainside, from boats and beaches the cry

Is heard of Kingdom come, of God among us.

In synagogues, he reads the scrolls about why

The servant came to set the captive, us,

Free. To cheer the poor, raise up the lowly,

And as his Mother said to Elizabeth,

He came to cast down from their throne the mighty.

This was his message, he would not take a breath

Until lifted up he take his last, the final

Breath, these words his final homily:

“Into your hands, I commend my spirit, all

Is done.” But we still need help, need eyes to see.

 “The Fourth Luminous Mystery”

Taboric light, shekinah mist unveils

The Truth, the hidden Light behind the Shadow.

The dull becomes radiant, and holy blows

The wind. The three men continue to tell their tale.

Moses and Elijah prep the Holy Grail.

Peter sees and kneels and bends and bows

While James and John sit silent, Peter knows

Not what to say, his understanding fails.

The Light and mist return from whence they come,

Only to find their way back to the earth.

For Christ and Spirit dwell inside us all,

And he united all things from our home

To his unapproachable divinity, our worth

Refreshed with light and life from one eternal.

 “The Fifth Luminous Mystery”

He lifts himself when lifting up the bread,

And in the cup of wine they drink his blood.

He presents himself to us just as should

Because he is alive who once was dead.

With the whole of Christ we are wholly fed,

And are consumed by this our holy food.

We become what we eat, and this is good

For we are washed by his flesh and the blood he bled.

But how do I live this all consuming life?

And how is it the substance is transformed?

And how could he join to our humanity?

Consumed I no longer live for sin and strife,

But am transfigured by the one who performed

The final task. I in him and he in me

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