Thank the Heavens
Thank the Heavens for all Beauty
that surrounds us, heritage along with duty,
heraldry of sun and moon, of galaxies in flight,
our daily blessings from the Architect of Light.
Thank the Heavens for the fractured rays
of shimmering auroras, sunsets all ablaze,
horizon glows, sheet lightning, thunderbolts,
refreshing rains, twin rainbows, nature’s somersaults.
Thank the Heavens for exuberant celestial blue,
fast shooting stars and constellations that renew,
wonderment at limitless experiments,
of interplaying earth, water, air and fire elements.
Thank the Heavens for recurring seasons, sowing of the fields,
amber autumns, orchards offering rich yields,
fresh April greens, May colza fields, maturing wheat,
rich fragrances from lime trees, jasmine, lilacs sweet.
Thank the Heavens for migrating silhouettes,
fast flocks of geese, traversing orange sunsets,
dashing terns and wafting seagulls in the sky,
sandpipers, swallows, falcons, kites on high.
Thank the Heavens for melodious nightingales
canaries, cardinals, magpies with long tails,
toucans, macaws, peacocks, cockatoos at play,
intrepid eagles, condors, cormorants above the bay.
Thank the Heavens for the Amazon with bright macaws,
Australian galahs, gouldian finches, African flamingos,
chirping crickets, leaping grasshoppers — green and red and brown,
the timid red-eyed tree frog, Costa Rica’s old iconic clown.
That the Heavens for the whistling wind song,
frothing, roaring waterfalls, brooks that babble all along,
the sundry sounds of forests, Nature’s vibrant words,
stags bellowing in autumn, mating calls of myriad chanting birds.
Thank the Heavens for primeval beaches,
sands where turtles lay their eggs in lonesome reaches
countless life-forms of the great Australian Barrier Reef,
where corals reproduce in synchronized eruptions quite beyond belief!
Thank the Heavens for inspiring sights that conjure intimate emotions,
dazzling icebergs of the Arctic and Antarctic oceans,
iridescent glaciers: Lambert, Inostrantsev, Yolung, Aletsch,
Allalin, Baltoro, Vatnajökull … each a daunting stretch!
Thank the Heavens for vast oceans full of fish,
Alaska salmon, dolphins, whales for every wish,
wide shores for water-skiing, sailing, surfboard gliding,
snorkeling in turquoise waters, scuba diving.
Thank the Heavens for majestic mountaintops,
cliffs dotted with chamois, bold ibex near abysmal drops,
red deer, grey goats and whistling marmots,
rye fields in the valley ripening to copious crops.
Thank the Heavens when the blossoms blow
as snow in April afternoons, when glow-worms glow
in sultry summer nights, and squirrels chase
each other, chipmunks winking at the race.
Thank the Heavens for our friendly garden hedgehogs,
and our faithful friends: the almost human cats and dogs.
Each creature is our sister and our brother
as indeed our hallowed Earth is mother.
Thank the Heavens for each blade of grass,
for eucalyptus, baobab, beech, birch and ash.
We stand in awe before high flowering magnolias and acacias,
blooming Bouganvilliers, Jacarandas — all exulting Deo gratias!
Thank the Heavens for enduring dewdrops on a rose,
for crocuses that break through thawing snows,
for multicoloured tulips, dancing daffodils,
the scents of hyacinths along Dutch windmills.
Thank the Heavens for the Leitmotifs of Life,
harmonious music that resolves all stress and strife,
the Song of Songs, Tannhäuser’s Pilgrims choir,
Beethoven’s Pastoral, inspiring us ever higher.
Thank the Heavens for the trumpet call,
for violins and oboes in the concert hall,
for operas as grand as Rosenkavalier,
for Bach Cantatas, Händel Oratorios old and dear.
Thank the Heavens for sweet tears that swell
when friends depart in fleeting farewell,
when listening to Schubert’s melancholic moods,
impromptus, Lieder, quartets, interludes…
Thank the Heavens for insightful metaphors revealing
naked truth, symbolic language charged with feeling,
thoughts cross-fertilizing into codes of word gestation,
algorithms to release the fullness of Creation.
Thank the Heavens for our existential curiosity,
instinctive yearning, living poetry,
an inborn Faustian striving, diligent desire,
the fountainhead of action, source of fire.
Thank the Heavens for that healthy appetite
for knowledge, thirst for justice, for what’s right,
for vital dialectics that display the thrill
of all Creation, open options, freedom of the will.
Thank the Heavens for our urge to travel,
meet old cultures, watch world history unravel:
Trade routes, silk road, rivers, channels, market places,
hoary ruins, viaducts, vestiges of gods and races.
Thank the Heavens for the faculty of reason,
seeking truth and inner peace in every season,
practicing proportion with imagination —
testing our Promethean power of invention.
That the Heavens for perpetual contrast:
fair or ugly, quiet or loud, contented or downcast,
slow or fast, myopic or far-seeing…
Contrast is the sinusoidal law of Being.
Thank the Heavens for the gift of hope,
an optimistic world kaleidoscope,
good humour and the grace of laughter:
Chaplin, Disney, Larson now and hereafter.
Thank the Heavens for the gift of giving
of ourselves, of sharing with the living
graciously in friendship and largesse,
not bent on market do ut des.
Thank the Heavens for a welcome opportunity
to help, do good, advance a cause, experience empathy,
as good Samaritans need nothing in return,
for goodness is its own reward, as all can learn.
Thank the Heavens for a sense of brotherhood,
true human solidarity, converging planethood,
committed to conserving common heritage for generations,
conscious of the boundless Treasures of all Nations.
Thank the Heavens for millennia of fine youth
whose quick perfection illustrates their transient truth,
hilarious children, adolescents that evolve like flowers,
butterflies that flutter, vibrant bells on lofty towers.
Thank the Heavens for a furtive glance
that animates our hope and gives us chance
to earn a soft caress and reap a tender smile,
for gentle words that reconcile.
Thank the Heavens for St. Francis’ Hymn
to all Creation, so diverse and trim,
for Providence that constantly astounds us,
wonderment at all the Goodness that surrounds us.
Thank the Heavens for each day, each moment that we live,
for loving others, being loved, enthused to give and to forgive.
We pray for intuition how to safely row to gracious banks.
We thank the Heavens for the very word of thanks.