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Okay, I just forgot. April was National Poetry Month, and I neglected to suggest that reading poetry is a spiritual practice in April. Yet poetry knows no bounds. So I’m suggesting it now.

I know. Not everybody loves poetry. But I offer this poem by Emily Dickinson (shared with me by Pastor Karen Sonray today)—one that continues to celebrate these days after Easter.

Love is like Life, merely longer.

Love is like death, enduring the grave.

Love is the fellow of the resurrection,

Scooping up the dust and chanting, “Live!”

Notice which words or phrases strike you. How do they speak to your soul? Why? Why now?

Or if none of this poem touches you, notice that. Same question. Why? 

For me, I’m sitting with how Love scoops up the dust and chants, “Live!” Maybe it reminds me that I am dust and to dust I shall return, but in the meantime—Live! Or maybe Love scoops us up in the dust of grieving and reminds me to keep on living. More to just sit with this morning.

That’s what I like about poetry; it can meet your soul wherever it is.

Pastor Marcia Wakeland is a retired ELCA pastor, a spiritual director and a listening advocate. She is interested in the actual experience of having faith and how that is lived out. She can be reached at for comments or more questions Her ongoing blog of living out spiritual practices is