Dreaming of Stones
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In the world before wakingI meet a winged one,feathered, untethered,who presses in my palmthree precious stones,like St. Ita in her dream,but similarities end there,her with saintliness and certainty,me asking questions in the dark.

All I know isI am not crafted frompatience of rock or gravity of earth,nor flow of river,I am not otter withher hours devoted to play.I am none of these.At least not yet.

The stones will still be singingcenturies from now,made smooth byall kinds of weather.If I strike them together,they spark and kindle.Do I store them as treasuresto secretly admireon storm-soaked days?Or wear them as an amuletaround my neck?

When the angel returns to mein the harsh truth of last morning,will she askwhat have I endured, [End Page 111] treasured, and sparked?Will she ask what have I hidden awayand what made visible? [End Page 112]

Christine Valters Paintner

Christine Valters Paintner is an American poet and writer living in Galway, Ireland. The author of nine books of nonfiction on creative process and contemplative practice, she earned her Ph.D. in Christian Spirituality from the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley and is the founder of AbbeyoftheArts.com. Her poems have been published in The Galway Review, Headstuff, Skylight 47, and Presence. christine@abbeyofthearts.com.

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