A Year of Creating Dangerously, Day 225: Sunday God Quote – Meggie Royer

Meggie Royer

“I refuse to be the wounded woman on a cross
that you crucify with your disapproval like nails”

I believe in God. Yet I find that often some of the most beautiful and insightful thoughts on God, faith and spirituality come from people who don’t believe in God. It has made me greatly appreciate them. The perspective they bring causes me to ask important questions about my perspective. Sometimes an atheist or an agnostic can teach me far more about belief in a song or poem or work of art than a year’s worth of sermons.

For my Sunday God Quote I give an example of that kind of creativity. It is a poem wonderfully crafted but also very challenging if you happen to believe in God. But don’t take that challenge as an affront; instead, take it as a means to a deeper understanding – of yourself, of the world, of your God. And, perhaps, a deeper understanding of those who don’t hold to your point of view. Art is meant to speak from an infinite number of angles in order to build countless bridges between people. Ultimately, it creates compassion.

The quote below comes from Meggie Royer, a 22-year old poet from the United States:

“My lack of faith in God is not a dilapidated house.
It does not need to be razed to the ground or burned down to cinders.
I refuse to be the wounded woman on a cross
that you crucify with your disapproval like nails;
I will only be the woman who believes in thunderstorms
the same way lightning loves the tops of trees it strikes
every time it gets tired of being pent up in an unforgiving sky,
the only difference is that I believe these are natural weather phenomenons,
not God’s belly rumbling or synapses firing.
When my doorway is filled with groups of people
wielding religious conversion pamphlets like crossbows,
I will be the martyr who steps aside to let the arrows
crack through the plaster in my wall instead of piercing my chest.
This is not a eulogy to the believer I could have been.
This is a battle cry to the believer I always have been,
believer in sunsets like splashes of paint, handholding
like willow branches brushing one another, new mornings
after old nights spent drowning in despair, believer
in love as an entire language instead of a single word.
Just because my beliefs align themselves on a different spectrum
does not mean they are the wrong wavelength or color.
And even though I think the universe was created by the Big Bang
instead of a God with magic dust shooting from his fingertips,
my universe does not contain fewer stars.”

Meggie’s Bio:

Meggie Royer is a writer and photographer from the Midwest who is currently majoring in Psychology at Macalester College. Her poems have previously appeared in Words Dance Magazine, The Harpoon Review, Melancholy Hyperbole, and more. She has won national medals for her poetry and a writing portfolio in the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, and was the Macalester Honorable Mention recipient of the 2015 Academy of American Poets Student Poetry Prize.

A Year of Creating Dangerously, Day 224: Saturday Life Quotes – Jim Henson

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“The most sophisticated people I know – inside they are all children.”

Jim Henson (1936-1990) was a childhood hero of mine. I grew up with Sesame Street and the Muppet Show, quite literally as I was 3 years old when the Street premiered on PBS in 1969 and it became an integral part of my growing up. At a tender 11 years old I was living with my family in Edinburgh, Scotland when the Muppet Show became a phenomenon in the United Kingdom, long before audiences in the U.S. got to enjoy it. My family and I never missed an episode as it aired on ITV in Britain. To me, Henson was an absolute genius and from what I knew of him as a child, a man to be admired for his approach to life.

Jim Henson died far too young but left behind and incredible legacy of creativity, compassion, humour, whimsy, insight and characters who will live on and on for both children and for adults who cling to childlikeness and the power of imagination. As a man who ended up being surrounded by celebrities and fame, he never became shallow, self-serving or smug. He stands out as being someone who stuck to his guiding principles until the day he died.

Today for my Saturday Life Quotes I wanted to share some words from a man who made it a life goal to be positive, to be proactive, and to be a force for good in the world…

“My hope still is to leave the world a bit better than when I got here.”

“Life’s like a movie, write your own ending. Keep believing, keep pretending.”

“Never eat anything at one sitting that you can’t lift.”

“I’ve always tried to present a positive view of the world in my work. It’s so much easier to be negative and cynical and predict doom for the world than it is to try and figure out how to make things better. We have an obligation to do the latter.”

“I know it’s easier to portray a world filled with cynicism and anger, where problems are solved with violence…It’s an easy out. What’s a whole lot tougher is to offer alternatives, to present other ways conflicts can be resolved, and to show you can have a positive impact on your world. To do that, you have to put yourself out on a limb, take chances, and run the risk of being called a do-gooder.”

“Certainly I’ve lived my whole life through my imagination. But the world of imagination is there for all of us–a sense of play, of pretending, of wonder. It’s there with us as we live.”

“I spend a few minutes in meditation and prayer each morning. I find that this really helps me to start the day with a good frame of reference. As part of my prayers, I thank whoever is helping me – I’m sure that somebody or something is – I express gratitude for all my blessings and try to forgive the people that I’m feeling negative toward. I try hard not to judge anyone, and I try to bless everyone who is part of my life, particularly anyone with whom I am having any problems.”

“Watch out for each other. Love everyone and forgive everyone, including yourself. Forgive your anger. Forgive your guilt. Your shame. Your sadness. Embrace and open up your love, your joy, your truth, and most especially your heart.”

 

A Year of Creating Dangerously, Day 223: Canada’s Painted Grandeur, Part 10

 

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Emily Carr, Stumps and Sky, 1934

“Art is an aspect of God and there is only one God, but different people see Him in different ways. Though He is always the same He doesn’t always look the same…” – Emily Carr (1871-1945) was never an official member of the Group of Seven, but as a contemporary of the Group and a painter of considerable vision and skill, she was enfolded by her fellow artists. Lawren Harris, the founder of the Group of Seven, once told her, “You are one of us.” Carr is featured today as the last installment of my look at Canada’s Painted Grandeur…

A Year of Creating Dangerously, Day 221: Canada’s Painted Grandeur, Part 8

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Frederick Varley, Stormy Weather Georgian Bay, 1920

“I want to paint sunshine and burning golden leaves and blue waters, and laughing faces. ” – Frederick Varley (1881-1969) was a member of the celebrated Group of Seven and the featured artist for Part 8 of Canada’s Painted Grandeur…

A Year of Creating Dangerously, Day 217: Saturday Life Quote – Dorothy Parker

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Dorothy Parker (1893-1967), American poet and satirist, provides us with today’s Life Quote that is very worthy to be put to memory:

“Four be the things I am wiser to know:
Idleness, sorrow, a friend, and a foe.
Four be the things I’d been better without:
Love, curiosity, freckles, and doubt.
Three be the things I shall never attain:
Envy, content, and sufficient champagne.
Three be the things I shall have till I die:
Laughter and hope and a sock in the eye.”