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Jun 7 - 13:  e-Communitarian   ☙   Minister   ☙   RE   ☙   Music   ☙   Adult RE   ☙   Practice: Once-a-Month Retreat Days (Worth a try/Occasional)

2019-01-31

Music: Sun Feb 3

The coincidence of a sermon on creature comforts and the 210th anniversary of the birth of Felix Mendelssohn prompts this morning's musical selections. In the case of the Offertory, "The Bees' Wedding" provides a felicitous intersection. In reality, the popular nicknames by which many of Mendelssohn's Songs without Words are known are the inventions of publishers, but they are provided here for their evocative power. Elsewhere, Debussy's elephantine lullaby for Jimbo (a mis-transliteration of "Jumbo") and two tender animal portraits from Jacques Ibert's Histoires (stories) for piano, pay homage to four-footed and hard-shelled friends. Read on for programming details.

Centering Music: Adam Kent, piano

Songs without Words
      In G Major, Op. 62, No. 4 "Morning Song"
      In A Major, Op. 19, No. 4 "Consolation"
      In E-flat Major, Op. 53, No. 2 "Fleecy Cloud"
      In A Major, Op. 102, No. 5 "The Joyous Peasant"
      In C Major, Op, 102, No. 6 "Belief"

                Felix Mendelssohn

Opening Music:

      "Jimbo's Lullaby" from Children's Corner

                Claude Debussy

Offertory:

      Song without Words in C Major, Op, 67, No. 4 "The Bees' Wedding"

                Felix Mendelssohn

Interlude:

      "The Leader of Golden Tortoises" and "The Little White Donkey" from Histoires

                Jacques Ibert

Religious Education News: Sun Feb 3

The Great Chili Cook-Off as it is known in some culinary circles couldn’t hold a candle or chili pepper to the CUUC Chili Community Meal! Special, special thanks go out to Kim Force who ably headed up this event, coordinated volunteers, sent out emails and so much more. Our success was due in large part to her efforts. She was “smokin’,” as they say! The variety of chilis were amazing along with all the side dishes. Everyone I saw was thoroughly enjoying this classic comfort meal. I would be remiss to not single out the great CUUC teamwork demonstrated by members of the congregation working so hard in the kitchen under the guidance of Steve Miller: the RE Council chairs, Christina Haran and Laura Goodspeed, all the teachers, and most of all the students of 4th–5th and 6th–7th grades.

For this Sunday’s Children’s Worship, our students will help Amy Swiss of the Hunger and Homelessness team “stuff” our donated backpacks with school supplies and personal notes to support teens in the Brighter Futures After-School Mentoring Program. Winter has its grip on us with extreme temperatures, but that doesn’t stop our teachers and students from enjoying the beauty of winter with the upcoming lesson for 2nd–3rd grade celebrating the wonder of winter and our universe. Our hope is that the children come to appreciate the splendor of our natural world and respect how fragile it is. Grades 4th–5th get the opportunity to explore “humor”: how it heals, can sustain us, and help us in times of tribulation. Certainly humor warms our hearts and souls! So RE is fully engaged as usual and living winter with spring in our hearts

Michele Rinaldi
RE Coordinator

Looking ahead...

RE This Sunday, Feb 3
Grades K-5 start in Fellowship Hall for Children’s Worship, where we will fill our donated backpacks with school supplies and personal notes for area teens in need. Grades 6-12 start in classrooms.

Special Friends Sign Up
This Sun Feb 3 we begin our pen pal program that anonymously matches children in RE and adults in the congregation so they get to know one another better. After exchanging six letters over nine weeks, the pen pals get to meet at the Canvass Community Meal on Sun Mar 31. Any questions? Contact RE@cucwp.org.

2019 Variety Show, Sat May 4, 5:00pm
SAVE THE DATE: This year will be our 7th Annual Variety Show (WOW!), always one of the most FUN fundraisers at CUUC. It is also an event where everyone, children to adults, can pitch in and create meaningful ties to a social justice cause. So work on your act and get ready to vote on Sun Feb 10 for which charity we will support this year. HELP WANTED: It really takes a village to run this event, and just like in the past 6 years, the 2019 Variety Show requires all hands on deck. PLEASE help by signing up to be our Bake Sale Director, or Head of Donations, or Pizza Dinner Coordinator. Learn more HERE. Contact Liz Suvanto (elizabethsuvanto@hotmail.com). When the big jobs are filled, the smaller details fall into place and the fun can begin! ~ The Variety Show Team

2019-01-25

Across the Wide Universe

Practice of the Week
Across the Wide Universe

Category: Ecospiritual. These practices are oriented toward developing our spirituality through our connection with our planet home and our responsibility to care for it.


The ancients had it easy. To them, the heavens offered guidance for the future and hinted at the will of the gods. The sky told stories of tricksters, heroes, and magical beasts. The sky was an open book, put there to be read and interpreted. It all spun around us, put there just so for our benefit. Comforting, isn't it?

In relation to our galaxy, the Milky Way, we are definitely not in the middle of things. Our sun, which is no different than any other ordinary middle-aged star, is located far out on one of the spiral arms of the galaxy, a sort of galactic backwater in a rather hum-drum neighborhood of stars, with nothing particularly exceptional nearby.

It all began back with the Big Bang – what Brian Swimme calls the Primordial Flaring Forth, and Connie Barlow calls the Great Radiance. This event is the common thread that connects our planet, sun, and solar system with the rest of what's out there. Ultimately, not only are we kin to every living thing that shares our Earth, we are also kin to nebulae, star clusters, and galaxies.
“There was no place in the universe that was separate from the originating power of the universe. Each thing of the universe had its very roots in this realm. Even space-time itself was a tossing, churning, foaming out of the original reality, instant by instant. Each of the sextillion particles that foamed into existence had its root in this quantum vacuum, this originating reality.” (Brian Swimme, The Universe Story)
Our brains are not wired to comprehend what's out there in the wide open spaces -- the vastness of it all and our own insignificance. The Earth is an atom in the grain of sand that is our galaxy, on the beach that is the universe. We are a snowflake on Everest, or a raindrop in a thousand oceans. We are very, very small.

And consider those breathtaking images of galaxies, nebulae, and star clusters from the Hubble space telescope. They are so far away that we don't even see them as they are today. The light from them has taken millions of years to reach us. When we look through our lenses, we look into the distant past, seeing the galaxies as they were when that light began its journey through space. Even light from the nearest star, Alpha Centauri, takes approximately four years to reach us. If it exploded into a supernova tomorrow, we would not know it for four years.

We're still here, on the same precious, blue-green gem we've always lived on. We're still spinning around the sun once a year. We may have lost our inflated ego, but we've gained, one hopes, some understanding, perspective, and awe.

We can use this newfound understanding about the immensity of it all and the unity of its common origin to recapture some of the wonder that tends to get lost in our technological age. We can reconnect with the wide-eyed awe that is our birthright as conscious beings. We aren't the center of the universe in the way that we thought before, but we are a part of something so much bigger than we are, something far beyond our petty differences and divisions.

Practices

1. Sky Watch. Go out on a clear night with no moon, as far away from city lights as possible. Forget star charts, constellation wheels, binoculars, and telescopes. Don't think too much. Just look. Lie down on a blanket on the ground and gaze into the velvet blackness. Imagine entire galaxies with millions of stars, gathered into clusters of their own. Imagine it all expanding, growing, and pushing out into forever. Imagine that you are suspended in space, and the entire sky is below you. Fall into the ocean of the infinite.

2. Hubble's Gifts. Search out some images taken by the Hubble space telescope. Look at these as you would look at works of art in a museum. Select a couple images as your favorites. Unlike the ancients, who looked for specific messages from the sky, you can create meaning for yourself by relating to the images on your own terms. Write in your journal about the experience.

3. Drop in the Ocean. Fill a small bottle with water and take it to the largest body of water near you: a lake, river, or, ideally, an ocean. Mindfully, imagine one molecule of water within your bottle. Picture it in your mind, glowing blue-green and beautiful. Now add one drop to the lake, river, or ocean. Sit nearby, and meditate for a few minutes on the tiny drop now drifting in the larger body of water, and that beautiful molecule you imagined drifting out with it. Follow its journey in your imagination. Where does it go? Now, mentally make the leap and see the molecule as the Earth, floating in the ocean of the universe. Allow your mind to play with that image for a while.

Group Activities

Star Party. This is simply the “Sky Watch” practice described above, on a larger scale. Choose a night when the moon is new or nearly so. Bring blankets, drinks, and snacks. Open up, and share your sense of wonder with others in the group.

Questions for Group Conversation:
  • What are some other metaphors or analogies that could describe our place or size in the universe?
  • How do you feel when you consider the vastness of the heavens? What emotions does the experience of staring at the night sky evoke in you?
  • So, what is the meaning of it all? Is there a meaning to existence? Do we create meaning for ourselves, or are there greater forces at work? Does it matter?

* * *

From the Minister, Fri Jan 25

This week I'm reflecting on Peggy Clarke and Matthew McHale’s essay, "Becoming Resilient: Community Life for a New Age” – Chapter 6 of the 2018-19 UUA Common Read, Justice on Earth: People of Faith Working at the Intersections of Race, Class and the Environment.
A
The prophetic task, the authors note, is not merely to decry injustice. It’s more broadly about nurturing, nourishing, and evoking, an alternative community. The essay then develops in two parts:

1. Resilience-based organizing. Here we learn about Movement Generation, which offers trainings, resources, and support to social movements led by communities of color or low income. Movement Generation’s organizing approach is rooted in community “in a way that reorients power to be more local and democratic.”

The approach is inspired by such examples as the Black Panthers and MST (Brazil’s Landless Workers Movement -- Movimento dos Trabalhadores Rurais Sem Terra). The Black Panthers’ less famous programs provided services such as free breakfast for school children, free medical clinics and drug rehab, clothing distribution, and classes on politics and economics. In Brazil, MST peacefully occupies unused land, securing it for the dispossessed. MST sets up cooperative farms, constructs houses, schools, and clinics while working for environmental sustainability and promoting Indigenous culture and gender equality.

2. Congregations as centers for community resilience. “Houses of worship will need to become centers of hope and resilience.” Doing this will entail congregational engagement with the communities around us -- offering meeting places and shelter, learning centers for reskilling, among other things. “We can start by identifying local ‘front-line communities’ – low-income communities and communities of color who bear the brunt of the devastation of the modern industrial system and who are leaders in the struggle to shift toward a more just and sustainable future.” Once such a prospective community is identified, the congregation’s task is solidarity, listening, relationship-building, humility, and a willingness to take on a support role when asked – NOT to expect to swoop in as the savior or the experts.

The authors conclude: “Without authentic partnership and without clearly understanding the systemic transformation required, our response to the current climate crisis will be insufficient. . . . Building resilient communities is the transformative response these times demand.”

Questions
What communities around CUUC are most directly affected by issues in which environment and race come together? How might CUUC develop a relationship of solidarity with those communities?

One response to the essay might be: “I’m convinced that we need to commit ourselves to supporting and nurturing communities of resilience. But I don’t see any need for congregations. Congregations should simply fold – transferring their land, buildings, and members’ energy to organizations like Movement Generation.” How would you respond to this suggestion? The members of a support network for resilient community would share a kind of “secular faith” – is that faith enough?

For my reflection/summary on previous chapters, click the title:
  1. Jennifer Nordstrom, "Intersectionality, Faith, and Environmental Justice"
  2. Paula Cole Jones, "The Formation of the Environmental Justice Movement"
  3. Sheri Prud'homme, "Ecotheology"
  4. Sofia Betancourt, "Ethical Implications of Environmental Justice"
  5. Adam Robersmith, "Cherishing Our World: Avoiding Despair in Environmental Justice Work"
Yours in faith,
Meredith

The Liberal Pulpit New:
Index of past sermons: HERE. Index of other reflections: HERE.
Videos of sermons are on the Liberal Pulpit Youtube Channel: HERE

Practice of the Week: Across the Wide Universe We can use this newfound understanding about the immensity of it all and the unity of its common origin to recapture some of the wonder that tends to get lost in our technological age. We can reconnect with the wide-eyed awe that is our birthright as conscious beings. We aren't the center of the universe in the way that we thought before, but we are a part of something so much bigger than we are, something far beyond our petty differences and divisions. READ MORE.

Your Moment of Zen: Unhappy The waning gibbous moon, partially behind a cloud, the evening cool grass, blossoms on a tree along the walk, the glass of water sitting on the table -- are answers to all you could ask.

Case
Raven met Grouse moping around one day and asked, "How's it going, Grouse?"
Grouse said, "I'm so unhappy."
Raven said, "What do you think might make you happy?"
Grouse said, "I don't know. I don't ask for much."
Raven said, "Way too much."
Hotetsu's Verse
How happy is the little stone --Emily Dickinson
the trees . . . give off such hints of gladness --Mary Oliver

Mary's trees, Emily's little stone,
Cheerful stars, a merry brook,
Shy gemstones, humble dirt,
Lugubrious rain, angry thunder,
Cruel frost or oppressive heat
Vengeful flood or punishing drought
Sanguine dawn and pensive dusk --

Ask any of them, "What do you want?"
They have nothing to answer.
Case by Robert Aitken; introduction and Verse by Meredith Garmon
Zen at CUUC, Sat Jan 26: SEE HERE

RAVEN INDEX

Music: Sun Jan 27


Someone’s turning 263 today, even though he doesn’t look a day over 262!  Happy birthday, Mozart! Join us at 10 am for a Music for All Ages presentation, featuring Christian and Tycho Force and Music Director Adam Kent, to find out more about the home life of the world’s favorite Wunderkind. The Offertory features a work by Unitarian composer Béla Bartók, indicative of his interest in Eastern European folk music, in this case the indigenous music of Transylvania. The CUUC Choir is also on hand with messages of hope and joy, warming hearts in this coldest of seasons. Read on for programming details.

Centering Music: Tycho and Christian Force; Adam Kent, piano
Mozart at 263: a Music for All Ages Presentation, including
12 Variations on “Ah, vous dirai-je maman” K. 265

Anthem: CUUC Choir directed by Lisa N. Meyer and accompanied by Georgianna Pappas
I Hope You Dance    
Tia Sillers and Mark D. Sanders, arr. by Ed Lojeski

Offertory:
Transylvanian Dances
            1. Bagpipes
            2. Bear Dance
            3. Finale
                                                            Béla Bartók

Anthem:
Gaudeamus Hodie    
Earlene Rentz  

2019-01-24

Religious Education News: Sun Jan 27

We hear the word “diversity” all the time. Certainly here at CUUC it is a paramount founding principle. We unexpectedly had Mother Nature display her personal handiwork of diversity in our weather last Sunday. Depending on your location, it ran the gamut from rain, freezing rain, snow, sleet, to simply, poof… nothing! Luckily, it was much ado about nothing in White Plains and hearty souls prevailed. On our Martin Luther King Sunday there were approximately 18 children and youth who participated under the great direction and teaching of Laura Goodspeed and Diane Keller. Many, many thanks to them for their determination to lead the MLK program in spite of inclement elements. They both consistently demonstrate their dedication and commitment to our RE program. Perry contributed a wonderful MLK skit in which everyone got to play a role, and the students also put their artistic talents to the test making posters concerning racial equality, as well as for our upcoming Chili Community Meal. From all accounts, not only did they have fun, but they were either introduced or reminded of the ever living philosophy and mission of MLK. So, I segue back to the meaning of diversity. It applies to both CUUC and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It means understanding that each individual is unique and one of a kind. We in turn recognize those differences, whether it be race, gender, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, socio-economic status, and so much more. Our goal last Sunday was to translate this to our children as not only part of their religious education but as a fundamental foundation for their growth as human beings. Our yearly celebration of this great individual provides us the mantle of responsibility as teacher, parent, mentor, and UU to instill the very same principles that perfectly parallel Unitarian Universalism. And what are those simplistic, yet powerful tenets, our guidepost to unshakeable beliefs? Violence serves no purpose other than destruction. To be non-violent is in fact courageous. We are partnered to treat other people with understanding, dignity, and respect. How and why, you ask? If we expect such treatment for ourselves, then it behooves us to reciprocate equally. Our children should model themselves after us and live a life reflective of education, commitment, and reconciliation. These fundamental truths defined Dr. King and his life’s work. We in turn as UUs follow the very same path, sometimes faltering, as it is a rocky road, yet fully committed through our beliefs and his inspiration to form a community of diversity and acceptance.

Michele Rinaldi
Religious Education Coordinator

Looking ahead...

RE This Sunday, Jan 27
Grades K-7th start in the sanctuary for Music For All Ages and Wonder Box Story. Grades 8th-12th start in classrooms.

Religious Education Special Friends Sign Up
Join us for this pen pal program that anonymously matches children and adults in the congregation so they get to know each other better. After exchanging six letters over nine weeks, the pen pals get to meet at the Canvass Community Meal on Sun Mar 31. Please email RE@cucwp.org to sign up.

Chili Community Meal, Sun Jan 27
The heat of chili and the warmth of community. Hosted by the 4th-5th and 6th-7th grade RE classes to support their social justice projects. Please email RE@cucwp.org if you would like to bring a pot of chili to support the class. Cost: $5 per Adult, $3 per child, $15 max per family.

2019-01-18

Religious Education News: Jan 20

Last Sunday was one of those special days when the grade K–5 Children’s Worship was led by Perry Montrose, our director of faith development. In short order he ably gathered all the children in a cozy circle and read a story revolving around the theme of simplicity and the need to enhance our lives with that concept. The children got to interact and act out various actions of the character as Perry read. He then played a short video of “city” life, with crowds of people, horns blowing, tons of cars traveling fast, and asked the children if this whirlwind pace was a simple life and did they like it. Surprisingly, a few of them said it was too busy and “crazy.” It appeared that the story and video clearly demonstrated the need as well as the desire to enjoy calmness and focus. Certainly, a simple life speaks for itself. We are midway through January forging our way toward the heart of winter, but the cold and snow will not deter us from many exciting events to come. We are preparing to celebrate MLK day this Sunday, and getting our appetites and community spirit geared towards the annual Chili Meal fundraiser next week.

Michele Rinaldi
Religious Education Coordinator

Looking ahead...

RE This Sunday, Jan 20
All ages in Fellowship Hall for MLK Sunday activities.

Religious Education Special Friends Sign Up
Join us for this pen pal program that anonymously matches children and adults in the congregation so they get to know each other better. After exchanging six letters over nine weeks, the pen pals get to meet at the Canvass Community Meal on Sun Mar 31. The letter exchanges begin on Sun Jan 27. Please email RE@cucwp.org to sign up.

Chili Community Meal, Sun Jan 27
The heat of chili and the warmth of community. Hosted by the 4th-5th and 6th-7th grade RE classes to support their social justice projects. Please email RE@cucwp.org if you would like to bring a pot of chili to support the class. Cost: $5 per Adult, $3 per child, $15 max per family.

In the Community - Family Friendly MLK Events

“The Dream Is Still Alive: Remembering Dr. King with Songs for Peace, Justice, and Equality,” Jim Scott in Concert, Fri Jan 18, 7:30pm, UU Fellowship of Northern Westchester, 236 S Bedford Rd, Mt Kisco
Jim Scott, composer of “Gather the Spirit” and other UU hymns, will lead a participatory songfest of music celebrating the ideals that Dr. Martin Luther King championed. More about Jim at jimscottmusic.com. Sliding Scale Admission $12-20. Purchase tickets at jimscottatuufnw.brownpapertickets.com.

Bookfair to Benefit the MLK Freedom Library, Mon Jan 21, 11:00am – 4:00pm, Barnes & Noble, 230 Main Street, City Center, White Plains OR online
Come to Barnes & Noble for a day of activities - OR - order items online from Jan 19 to Jan 24 at barnesandnoble.com/bookfairs and enter ID #12464053 at checkout. Purchases benefit the MLK Freedom Library. Flyer at mlkwestchester.org/events-1.

2019-01-15

Music: Sun Jan 20


Music from a variety of African-American traditions is featured this Sunday morning in honor of Dr. Martin Luther Day. The Centering Music includes arrangements from Samuel Coleridge-Taylor’s “Twenty-Four Negro Melodies” of orally-transmitted songs from the U. S. and the African continent, followed by a popular “rag” by Scott Joplin. The Offertory is a jazz favorite by the legendary Errol Garner. The CUUC Choir is also on hand with music from Native American and East-African traditions, all in keeping with Dr. King’s vision for a more inclusive society.
Read on for programming details.


Centering Music: Adam Kent, piano
“Let Us Cheer the Weary Traveler”
                                    Traditional Spiritual, arr. by Samuel Coleridge-Taylor
Take Nabandji
                                    Traditional South East African, arr. by Coleridge-Taylor
Maple Leaf Rag
                                    Scott Joplin

Anthem: CUUC Choir directed by Lisa N. Meyer and accompanied by Georgianna Pappas
Now I Walk In Beauty  
 Navajo Prayer, arr. by Gregg

Offertory:
“Twilight”
                                                            Errol Garner

Anthem:
Siyahamba
                                                            South African Freedom Song          

2019-01-11

From the Minister, Fri Jan 11

This week I'm reflecting on Adam Robersmith's essay, "Cherishing Our World: Avoiding Despair in Environmental Justice Work" -- Chapter 5 of the 2018-19 UUA Common Read, Justice on Earth: People of Faith Working at the Intersections of Race, Class and the Environment.

The situation is dire, Robersmith reminds us:
“We are affecting our climate and ecosystem in ways that are detrimental to life on the planet and to how we live….We should have changed as a nation long ago, yet we have not….Research shows that our acts disproportionately affect the poor and oppressed all over the world, yet we continue to use harmful technologies and resources.”
Trying to scare people into changing behaviors and policies hasn’t worked terribly well. Robersmith is reminded of our Universalist ancestors. When the predominant theology used fear (of hell) to induce righteousness, our ancestors pointed out:
“The preaching of future rewards and punishments, for the purpose of inducing people to love God and moral virtue, is not only useless, but pernicious.” (Hosea Ballou, 1834)
Rather than extrinsic punishments or rewards, argued Ballou, we ought to preach that God and moral virtue are intrinsically worthy and lovely.

Along similar lines, Robersmith urges that the value of the environment lies not in financial measures or apocalypse prevention. Rather, it is intrinsically worthy and lovely.
“If we, as a nation, a people, or a species, loved this planet as our Universalist ancestors understood loving God, we would have already made so many different choices about how we live on this Earth and with each other.”
In particular, by turning away from fear-based arguments about economies and catastrophes threatening all humanity, we can, instead, attend to localized effects on marginalized populations: mountaintop removal and strip mining degrade environments of poor communities; water poisoned with pollutants flows disproportionately into poorer communities of color; for example.

What Robersmith doesn’t mention is nonattachment to results. Of course, we should as lovingly and as rationally as possible discern strategies most likely to succeed, but sometimes we’ll guess wrong, and other times, even when our strategy has the best odds of success, we will still fail. Plan carefully for success, then let go of attachment to whether success happens. “The victory is in the doing,” as Gandhi said – not in the outcome.

“Turning off the water while brushing our teeth,” says Robersmith, “makes a difference and is a necessary next act.” But this is either hyperbole or fantasy. If it’s necessary, then one person failing to turn off the water one time means the planet is doomed. In fact, one person saving one quart of water per brush does not, in itself, make any measurable difference to the Earth – especially here in New York where water is plentiful. But it makes a difference to the one who does it. Practices of care change us even if they don’t change the planet. And if we are changed, we are more likely to influence others and do things that do make a difference. The victory, to repeat, is in the doing.

In leaving out the role of nonattachment to results, the risk is that we may disavow fear-mongering only to find ourselves mongering shame.

For my reflections on previous chapters, click the title:
  1. Jennifer Nordstrom, "Intersectionality, Faith, and Environmental Justice"
  2. Paula Cole Jones, "The Formation of the Environmental Justice Movement"
  3. Sheri Prud'homme, "Ecotheology"
  4. Sofia Betancourt, "Ethical Implications of Environmental Justice"
Yours in faith,
Meredith

The Liberal Pulpit New:
Index of past sermons: HERE. Index of other reflections: HERE.
Videos of sermons are on the Liberal Pulpit Youtube Channel: HERE

Practice of the Week: Simplify /Our lives are complicated. E-mails, phone calls, working long hours. Carrying the kids to music lessons, soccer practice, play dates or scouts – church. It’s a fast culture and just trying to match the velocity of others makes life hectic. Can we make our life simpler? READ MORE.

Your Moment of Zen: The Essence /You may recall, as told in #1, that Jackrabbit was the first teacher Raven visited. Asked what the Buddha Macaw realized when she saw the morning star, Jackrabbit said, "the truth of mutually dependent arising." It turns out Raven picked up a few other teachings from Jackrabbit before moving on to Prairie Dog.

When Zen teachers of old did the repetition thing (as in the case below -- albeit with a little twist), several things are probably going on. One of them is that repetition renders the words "flavorless" -- a strategy for not getting all wrapped up in the words and concepts. It shifts the emphasis from meaning to doing: saying these words is just something we do. It's a reminder that there is no meaning for words outside of the context of what we do with them.

"The mind is compassion and its essence has no qualities." Show me how you live that!

Case
One evening Owl asked, "I've heard that Jackrabbit Roshi said that the mind has no qualities and its essence is compassion. What do you think of that?"
Raven said, "The mind is compassion and its essence has no qualities."
Hotetsu's Verse
Compassion is not a quality.
So I put it to you,
Didactically, as if it were
A thing you could believe
Or that I could.

Yesterday I did, and tomorrow will, speak
Of compassion as if it were a quality --
Of a person, or an act --
As if it were a thing glommed on
That might not have been there,
That could disappear in a mean moment,
That the discovery of ulteriority
   could render fraudulent;
As if it were an ethic.
Today I speak differently.

Compassion is ontological, not ethical.
It is the stuff reality is made of.

So I intone, all professorial,
As if you should be taking notes,
As if I should apologize.

Outside there is the winter mountain
Made of rock and soil, trees and snow.
No qualities there either,
I whisper. Or was that you?
Case by Robert Aitken; introduction and Verse by Meredith Garmon
Zen at CUUC, Sat Jan 12: HERE

2019-01-10

Religious Education News: Jan 13

Last week it was my great privilege and joy to conduct the Children’s Service for K-5. I was really looking forward to this “solo” event and I was not disappointed. In following the theme of Simplicity, we held a discussion group about what simplicity means and what gifts the students received or what they did that was “simple” yet made them happy. Getting a Lego kit was definitely a front runner and someone’s lucky dog got fed! The kids drew pictures of the things we talked about and there were some great artistic interpretations. It is so heartwarming to experience the honesty of our children, as I did when I wrote the word “Leggo” on the flip chart and was immediately taken to task for misspelling. Who knew?

We then proceeded to join in a circle sitting on the floor where I introduced the book The Rainbow Fish. This rainbow fish was beautiful, covered with multi-colored scales, but he had no friends as he was haughty and proud. (One of the children said he was conceited and thought he was better than everyone else.) Another fish begged for just one scale, which the rainbow fish finally agreed to give, and then felt very strange. Before he knew it he had given away all his prized scales yet was happy for the first time. Now he was invited to join the other fish and play. After the story another child mentioned that his family gathered items for gifts to be given to people who had nothing at the holiday.

The message of simplicity was articulately expressed by a number of children. Not too wordy, not too superfluous, just clear and focused and right on mark. They had a clear understanding of the gratification of having less yet having so much when one thinks of others and shares. The lesson was simple yet spilled over with the values of family and being a UU. I could not help but think of the song by Crosby, Stills, and Nash, “Teach Your Children Well,” whose lyrics echo the line from the Shema, the important Jewish Prayer, “And you shall teach [these words] diligently to your children…”

You, who are on the road,
Must have a code that you can live by
And so become yourself
Because the past is just a good-bye
Teach your children well,
Their father's hell did slowly go by,
And feed them on your dreams
The one they picks, the one you'll know by.
Don't you ever ask them why, if they told you, you will cry,
So just look at them and sigh
And know they love you.”

The "road" is life's journey that we must all go through, during which we seek the truth of our existence, which may never be found. That doesn't matter despite our struggles. What does matter is the joy of living and loving and letting both parent and child be who they are without trying to fix what is not broken. The song lyrics are a road map for accepting people as they are and simply having gratitude for the experience of being. Do not let the trappings of materialism and power suffocate our basic goodness and compassion. This congregation has taught our children well…

Michele Rinaldi
Religious Education Coordinator

Looking ahead...

RE This Sunday, Jan 13
Grades K-5 start in Fellowship Hall for Children's Worship
Grades 6-12 start in classrooms

Religious Education Special Friends Sign Up
We invite you to join us for this pen pal program that anonymously matches children and adults in the congregation so they get to know each other better. After exchanging six letters over nine weeks, the pen pals get to meet at the Canvass Community Meal on Sun Mar 31. The letter exchanges begin on Sun Jan 27. Please email RE@cucwp.org to sign up.

Faith Development Friday, Fri Jan 11
Our evening of learning, spiritual growth, and community. 6:15pm Pizza & Salad Community Dinner; 7:00pm Programs; 8:30pm Coffee. Programs include Adult RE and Family Journey Group. Adults may also just come for a slice and unstructured social time together. All are welcome to stay after the programs to share coffee and a chat. RSVP to CUUCevents@gmail.com by 12:00 noon on Fri Jan 11.

In the Community - Family Friendly MLK Events

Interfaith Community Concert in Honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, Sun Jan 13, 4:00pm, Congregation Kol Ami, 252 Soundview Avenue, White Plains
This annual concert combines singers and musicians from many faiths and communities, and includes the “Adhan” Muslim call to prayer, the Calvary Baptist Church Inspirational Choir, The LOFT LGBT Community Center’s Pride Chorus, and the Shinnyo-en Buddhist Temple Ceremonial Taiko Drums & Choir. Sponsored by The Interfaith Connection and Westchester Martin Luther King, Jr. Institute for Nonviolence. Free event. Refreshments. Info: connect@mlkwestchester.org, 914-949-6555.

“The Dream Is Still Alive: Remembering Dr. King with Songs for Peace, Justice, and Equality,” Jim Scott in Concert, Fri Jan 18, 7:30pm, UU Fellowship of Northern Westchester, 236 S Bedford Rd, Mt Kisco
Jim Scott, composer of “Gather the Spirit” and other UU hymns, will lead a participatory songfest of music celebrating the ideals that Dr. Martin Luther King championed. More about Jim at jimscottmusic.com. Sliding Scale Admission $12-20. Purchase tickets at jimscottatuufnw.brownpapertickets.com.

Bookfair to Benefit the MLK Freedom Library, Mon Jan 21, 11:00am – 4:00pm, Barnes & Noble, 230 Main Street, City Center, White Plains OR online
Come to Barnes & Noble for a day of activities - OR - order items online from Jan 19 to Jan 24 at barnesandnoble.com/bookfairs and enter ID #12464053 at checkout. Purchases benefit the MLK Freedom Library. Flyer at mlkwestchester.org/events-1.

2019-01-09

Music: Sun Jan 13


CUUC Choir pianist Georgianna Pappas provides music from classical and popular traditions, treating us to her vocal accomplishments as well during the Interlude. Kim Force also offers a moving selection by Joni Mitchell. Read on for programming details.

Centering Music: Georgianna Pappas, piano
Prelude in C Major, W.T.C.  Book 2
Prelude in C Minor, W.T.C.  Book 1
Prelude in E-flat Major, W.T.C.  Book 2
Prelude in E Major, W.T.C.  Book 2
                                                            J. S. Bach

Opening Music:
Prelude in C Major, W.T.C.  Book 1
                                                            J. S. Bach
                       
Offertory: Kim Force, vocals
“Both Sides Now”                 
Joni Mitchell
                                           
Interlude:
“My Dear Acquaintance”                
Lyrics by Peggy Lee, Music by Paul Horner




2019-01-03

From the Minister, Thu Jan 3

This week I'm reflecting on Sofia Betancourt's essay, "Ethical Implications of Environmental Justice" -- Chapter 4 of the 2018-19 UUA Common Read, Justice on Earth: People of Faith Working at the Intersections of Race, Class and the Environment.

Betancourt got me thinking about the whiteness of the American environmental movement. Searching around, I learned that a survey released 2018 Oct
“found that about one-third of African-Americans, half of whites, and two-thirds of Latinos and Asians consider themselves to be environmentalists.” (Anthropocene, 2018 Oct 30)
OK, so environmentalism is not just a white people’s thing. But it is perceived that way. The survey also found that
“across racial and ethnic groups, people tended to underestimate how concerned people of color are about the environment, and overestimate how concerned white people are.” (Anthropocene, 2018 Oct 30)
Indeed, mainstream environmentalist organizations – groups like the Sierra Club, the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), and the Nature Conservancy – have, through their long history, consisted largely of upper- and middle-class whites focused on protecting wilderness areas. These groups have made the face of US environmentalism disproportionately white. More to the point, their focus -- protecting wilderness areas – has racial justice implications.

Consider the question of where to put waste facilities, landfills, dumps, and the most polluting industries. We clearly aren’t going to put them in wealthy, white neighborhoods. So (until we find a way to eliminate such pollution sources), that leaves two options: put them in poorer and darker-skinned neighborhoods, or put them out in an area away from human habitation. The historically predominantly-white environmental organizations (Sierra Club, NRDC, etc) work to keep industries, landfills, etc. from encroaching on our uninhabited areas -- thereby unwittingly pushing toxic pollution into poorer, black or Latino neighborhoods.

Betancourt cautions against
“a perilous tendency to sacrifice entire populations of our human family in the name of acting quickly.”
Black and brown folks’
“experiences of environmental racism and injustice are erased by a movement born out of an imagined pristine wilderness empty of humanity.”
She cites Aldo Leopold’s ethic –
“A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability, and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise.”
This influential principle, however, says nothing about environmental justice. It tends to treat “humanity” as a monolith – something to rein in for the sake of the planet. Instead -- or, rather, in addition -- we must attend to how consequences and risks of environmental destruction are unequally distributed within the human population.

Questions
  • Our first principle commits us to the worth and dignity of all – and thus to combat racism. Our seventh principle commits us respect the interdependent web – and thus to combat environmental harm. How do you balance and honor both of these imperatives in your spiritual life?
  • American individualism weakens the ethic of mutual care and engagement necessary for honoring the dignity of all. What are your relationships with communities of color? How might you reach out and deepen those relationships, from an ethic of care and mutuality?
Yours in faith,
Meredith

The Liberal Pulpit New:
Index of past sermons: HERE. Index of other reflections: HERE.
Videos of sermons are on the Liberal Pulpit Youtube Channel: HERE

Practice of the Week: Maintain Joy and Humor /Slogan to Live By. This is a slogan for assessment. Working with it is not a matter of pressuring ourselves to feel joy all the time. When we aren't joyful, when we're depressed or bitter, we need to know that we feel that way, not cover it up with a veneer of fake spiritual joy because someone says we should. The point is that we assess our situation with this slogan, Maintain Joy and Humor. We notice when we have joy and humor and when we don't. When we don't, we know how to work with our mind to adjust. READ MORE.

Your Moment of Zen: The Self /The self is passion. You don't need to think about your passion too much -- just have it, and watch it. I won't say embody it, since you can't not. I will say: if you take it for real, it can wear you out.

Case
Badger came to Raven privately and asked, "What is the self?"
Raven said, "Passion."
Badger asked, "Why are we told to forget it?"
Raven said, "Forget it!"
Badger said, "That's scary."
Raven croaked.
Badger sat back on his haunches and was silent.
Raven said, "Now I'm tired."
Verse
This mouth opens, and out I come:
A draft of air and jetsam.
The air: warm, moist, de-oxygenated.
The jetsam: vocabulary, syntax, accent, tone, and
Voice that could be no one else's,
Tossed from foundering meanings.

This mouth opens, and out I come:
A current of particularity and karmic goo,
Not at all the luminous seaworthy universality,
I dreamed sailing into port.

When I'm not thinking this way,
When dreams of absoluteness are wakened from,
Or the wreckage recognized as their realization,
Then this mouth opens, and out I come, and
Maybe my eddies of debris and yours
Dance.
Case by Robert Aitken; introduction and Verse by Meredith Garmon
Zen at CUUC, Sat Jan 5: HERE

Religious Education News: Jan 6

Happy New Year… happy new year... and so it goes. We keep hearing this wish from family and friends, but do we really reflect on its meaning? The operative word appears to be new with the ever-looming presence of the new year Grinch: resolution. We’re all going to go that extra mile and lose weight; we will adopt better eating habits; exercise will become our new friend; we’ll learn new skills; and the list goes on and on. It’s no wonder we charge from the gate with the best of intentions, yet more often than not stumble and even fail, and what we are left with is disappointment. Think about it: don’t we want to be better people and better models for our children? So your pants are a little tight, get elastic. So you can’t run the 5K, take a brisk walk. Eating healthy is boring, so go to McDonald’s only once per month. My point: shine on the inside as a Unitarian Universalist and ultimately you shine on the outside, too. Be kinder, more compassionate, and have respect for other people – and animals as well. Teach your children by example if you truly wish them to behave like you. Make this year and the years that follow a gift, not one year older, not another year of failure, but instead a miraculous second chance to hug your children, be kind to your spouse, to sit down and break bread as a family. Most of all resolve to love with all your being so that love spills over to the community of humankind. Toss away your regrets, the should have/could haves that haunt you, and focus on what’s right in front of you… community, congregation, family, friends, faith, and love.

Michele Rinaldi
Religious Education Coordinator

Looking ahead...

This Sunday in RE, Jan 6
Grades K-5 start in the Fellowship Hall for Children's Worship. Grades 6-12 start in classrooms.

Religious Education Special Friends Sign Up
We invite you to join us for this pen pal program that anonymously matches children and adults in the congregation so they get to know each other better. After exchanging six letters over nine weeks, the pen pals get to meet at the Canvass Community Meal on Sun Mar 31. The letter exchanges begin on Sun Jan 27. Please email RE@cucwp.org to sign up.

Faith Development Friday, Fri Jan 11
Our evening of learning, spiritual growth, and community. 6:15pm Pizza & Salad Community Dinner; 7:00pm Programs; 8:30pm Coffee. Programs include Adult RE and Family Journey Group. Adults may also just come for a slice and unstructured social time together. All are welcome to stay after the programs to share coffee and a chat. RSVP to CUUCevents@gmail.com by 12:00 noon on Fri Jan 11.

In the Community:

Indigenous Peoples of the Northeast Storytelling & Drumming, Sun Jan 6, 12:45pm, First Unitarian Society, 25 Old Jackson Ave, Hastings
We welcome Irene "Strong Oak" Lefebvre as guest storyteller, drummer, and teacher. Strong Oak and her wife, Mary, will lead adults and youth in our Indigenous Solidarity Service Learning Group, which is open to everyone - visitors welcome! You may also bring your own drum and participate. Childcare provided. Learn more at visioningbear.org.

Interfaith Community Concert in Honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, Sun Jan 13, 4:00pm, Congregation Kol Ami, 252 Soundview Avenue, White Plains
Sponsored by The Interfaith Connection and Westchester Martin Luther King, Jr. Institute for Nonviolence. Free event. Refreshments. Info: connect@mlkwestchester.org, 914-949-6555.

“The Dream Is Still Alive: Remembering Dr. King with Songs for Peace, Justice, and Equality,” Jim Scott in Concert, Fri Jan 18, 7:30pm, UU Fellowship of Northern Westchester, 236 S Bedford Rd, Mt Kisco, Sliding Scale Admission $12-20
Jim Scott, composer of “Gather the Spirit” and other UU hymns, will lead a participatory songfest of music celebrating the ideals that Dr. Martin Luther King championed. More about Jim at jimscottmusic.com. Purchase tickets at jimscottatuufnw.brownpapertickets.com.

Bookfair to Benefit the MLK Freedom Library, Mon Jan 21, 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM, Barnes & Noble, 230 Main Street, City Center, White Plains OR online
Come to Barnes & Noble for a day of activities - OR - order items online from Jan 19 to Jan 24 at barnesandnoble.com/bookfairs and enter ID #12464053 at checkout. Purchases benefit the MLK Freedom Library. Flyer at mlkwestchester.org/events-1

Maintain Joy and Humor

Practice of the Week
Maintain Joy (and Don't Lose Your Sense of Humor)

Category: Slogans to Live By: Carry these reminders at all times. These practices don't require setting aside a separate substantial chunk of time -- but they will slow you down a bit (and that's a good thing.) Resolve to get stronger at living by these maxims, day by day. Sometimes make one of them the focus of your daily journaling.


Maintain joy (and don't lose your sense of humor). Can you live by this slogan? Can you DECIDE to be joyful? Can you make yourself joyful when you’re in a bad mood? How could you keep your sense of humor when things are going badly? How realistic is this in the sort of world we live in, being the people we are?

If you’ve been practicing these “Slogans to Live By” – and the other “Practices of the Week” – then, by this time, you have some experience under your belt. Perhaps by now you have learned to trust yourself more, to be able to be honest about your shortcomings without condemning yourself for them. Maybe by now you've gotten the hang of how to practice with difficulty – and you really get it that running away inside only compounds the trouble. You can face difficult emotions without so much denial and avoidance. Maybe at this point you’ve been working for a while on the practices, "Be Determined" and "Stick With It" -- and have developed more faith in yourself with the "Own Your Nobility" practice. Perhaps you have taken to heart the practice to "Reproach Your Demons" and to "Aspire to the Impossible" -- and so on.

If so, it is likely that you are in a better mood more of the time than you have ever been, and a feeling of joy and gratitude isn't so foreign as it used to be. In fact, joy is never very far away. So you can begin to imagine that it is possible to keep and extend a joyful feeling, even when things are tough. You now know that conditions need not necessarily give rise to habitual reactions.

To some extent, as we continue to train, we have more and more choice about how we respond to what happens to us. Bad conditions need not destroy our state of mind. Even in the darkest of moments, there's some light. We can maintain our sense of humor, our sense of ease. And this really helps, especially when things are grim.

Through your meditation and slogan practice:
  • you have developed a habit of awareness in your life;
  • the empty or boundless nature of things is always close at hand and is something that you think about, that you're aware of;
  • impermanence is no longer something you hate, it's your good friend.
When you have reaped these fruits, then, yes, it is possible to maintain joy and humor most of the time.

Also, remember that this is a slogan for assessment. Working with it is not a matter of pressuring ourselves to feel joy all the time. When we aren't joyful, when we're depressed or bitter, we need to know that we feel that way, not cover it up with a veneer of fake spiritual joy because someone says we should. The point is that we assess our situation with this slogan, Maintain Joy and Humor. We notice when we have joy and humor and when we don't. When we don't, we know how to work with our mind to adjust. Maintain Joy and Humor is a tool designed to help us, not a stick to beat ourselves up with -- or an invitation to pretend we are feeling what we are not.

Here I can take myself as an example. I am not a model practitioner, but I have been doing the practice steadily since my youth, and it has given me a fairly lighthearted attitude and a sense of humor about things, even though my natural state of mind is dour. I'm still dour after all these years, but I am lighthearted about it! I don't work too hard at my practice, and yet as the years have gone on, I find that I am a happier guy despite advancing age and the loss of many good friends to death. I'm not so sure everyone who knows me would say this, but this is my honest assessment of my own inner state, as far as I know it and can recall.

Now suppose that suddenly, while I am innocently minding my own business, somebody jumps on me and starts beating me up. (Fortunately, this has never happened to me.) How would I react? I don't really know, but judging from reactions I've had in the past when unexpected dangerous things have happened, I guess I'd be energetically impressed with the immediacy of what was going on and interested to see what was going to happen next. I suppose that spontaneously I'd try to defend myself somehow. But I do not think I would be surprised or in a panic. And if circumstances came to pass that caused me to lose everything—my health, my home, my spouse, my reasonably balanced state of mind (this last one has happened, of course, and more than once), and find myself suddenly in a total panic -- well, this would be very startling. This would get my attention, and I would be curious about how I was going to handle my out-of-control mind, what would happen, and there would be some joy in that I think, some spaciousness mixed in with the strong bad feeling. Maybe I'd be thinking, "Wow, I never thought this could happen! All these years of expensive Zen training and look at me, I'm in a total panic. Practice has been getting too easy maybe. Now I am really going to test out all of this Zen stuff and see if it really works.” Probably that's how I'd maintain my joyful mind and my sense of humor. And insofar as I was brought low and lost my lightness and ease, I'm sure I'd notice that and realize I was in trouble and try to get some help if I could. I have a lot of friends and am confident that somehow someone would help me.

* * *


Joy doesn’t have that good a reputation in our culture. Joy may be associated with being spaced out, stupid, or blithely ignorant of the state of the world. What about the truth of suffering, the problem of greed and craving? What about warfare, oppression, prejudice, and on and on?

Not everything is OK. Yet we are still advised to be joyful.

We take things — and ourselves — so seriously! This slogan challenges that approach. It is a direct challenge to our usual earnest and heavy-handed approach to the path, to the world, and to ourselves. It is a challenge to the assumption that the way to fight heavy-handed problems is with heavy-handed solutions. And it is a challenge to our desire to make everything a big deal and of utmost importance and seriousness.

Maintain Joy and Humor. Don't follow your spiritual practice with gritted teeth, but with delight. Appreciate your good fortune in having found a path of peace and compassion. Have a little humor.

This does not just apply to when things are going well, and it does not mean that we should be disengaged. Instead, we could touch in to a sense of lightness and joy repeatedly, in whatever we do, no matter what is going on.

Practice

No matter what you are feeling or what is going on, smile at least once a day.

* * *

2019-01-02

Music: Sun Jan 6


The New Year and January’s monthly worship theme of Simplicity are inaugurated at CUUC in music as Flamenco artist Fernando Barros makes a return appearance. Together with Music Director Adam Kent, maestro Barros explores the idea of musical, literary, and cultural metamorphosis by combining Canadian songwriter Leonard Cohen’s timelessly simple melodies with the haunting carnality of Federico Garcia Lorca’s poetry and interjections from the world of Classical music. As unlikely as the pairing of Cohen and Lorca might initially seem, the Canadian musician credited a series of lessons with an Andalusian guitarist (who committed suicide after giving Cohen only a few classes) as the key to his musical formation. So enamored of Spanish gypsy culture was Cohen, that he named his only daughter Lorca, after the legendary playwright and poet, who had been assassinated in the early days of the Spanish Civil War. In addition to his literary gifts, Lorca was also a musician of note, who collected and arranged popular Andalusian tunes, as heard in this morning’s musical Postlude. Also represented are the words of Miguel de Cervantes, author of the epoch-defining Don Quixote, in the form of an old Spanish ballad Bailan las gitanas, heard this morning to the music of Cohen’s “Dance Me to the End of Love.” See inserts for translations of the Spanish-language texts, and read on for programming details. For more information on maestro Barros’s work as a performer, scholar, and educator, visit www.studyflamenco.com. For a promotional video on maestro Barros's work with Adam Kent, check out https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vIEM6m4Kd_c

Centering Music: Fernando Barros, cantaor; Adam Kent, piano
Si mis manos pudieran
Llagas de amor
Music based on Leonard Cohen’s “Who by Fire” and “If It Be Your Will,” words by Federico Garcia Lorca

Opening Music:
Se ha puesto el sol
Music based on Leonard Cohen’s “The Window,” words by Federico Garcia Lorca

Offertory:
Balada interior
            Music based on Leonard Cohen’s “Anthem,” words by Federico Garcia Lorca

Interlude:
Bailan las gitanas
Music based on Leonard Cohen’s “Dance Me to the End of Love,” words by Miguel de Cervantes

Postlude:
Las tres hojas

TRANSLATIONS

Si mis manos pudieran deshojar (If My Hands Could Tear the Leaves Off)



I pronounce your name
on dark nights,
when the stars come
to drink on the moon
and sleep in tufts
of hidden fronds.
And I feel myself hollow
of passion and music.
Crazy clock that sings
dead ancient hours.

I pronounce your name,
in this dark night,
and your name sounds
more distant than ever.
More distant that all stars
and more doleful than a calm rain.

Will I love you like then
ever again? What blame
has my heart?
When the mist dissipates,
what other passion may I expect?
Will it be calm and pure?
If only my fingers could
tear the leaves off the moon!

Llagas de amor (Wounds of Love)

This blazing light, this devouring fire,
this grey landscape I’ve made mine,
this sorrow centred round one idea,
this anguish of sky, world and time.
This weeping of blood that adorns
an unplucked lyre, the lusty torch,
this weight of the sea that pounds,
this scorpion that dwells in my breast
are all a garland of love, a sickbed
where I lie awake dreaming you are here
among the ruins of my downcast heart.
And though I try hard to be careful
your heart gives me a vale with hemlock spread
and the passion of bitterly knowing all.
Se ha puesto el sol (The Sun Has Set)

The sun has set.
The trees mediate like statues.
Now the wheat is cut.
What sorrow the
still water mills!

A stray dog wants to devour
Venus, and barks at Her.
The pre-kiss field shines
Like a giant apple.

Mosquitos, Pegasus of dew,
Wheel in the still air.
Light, the vast Penelope,
Weaves a brilliant night.

“Sleep, my daughters, for the wolf is coming,”
bleat the little sheep.
“Has autumn come yet?”
Says a withered flower.

Now come the shepherds with their nests
Over the distant mountains!
Now the children are playing
In the doorway of the old inn,
And there will be love songs,
That the old houses know
By heart.

Balada interior (Interior Ballad)

The heart
I had in school,
Where my primer
Was painted,
Is it in you,
Black night?

(Cold, cold,
Like the water of the river.)

My first kiss
That tasted like a kiss
And was for my child lips
Like fresh rain,
Is it in you,
Black night?

My first verse,
The girl with the braids
Who stared ahead,
Is it in you,
Black night?

(Cold, cold,
Like the water of the river.)

But my heart,
Gnawed by serpents,
That was hung from the
Tree of Knowledge,
Is it in you,
Black night?

(Hot, hot,
Like the water of the fountain.)

My wandering love,
A castle with no foundation,
Moldy with shadows,
Is it in you,
Black night?

(Hot, hot,
Like the water of the fountain.)

Oh, great pain?
You let nothing into your cave
But shadows.
Is it sure,
Black night?

(Hot, hot,
Like the water of the fountain.)

Oh, lost heart!
Eternal Requiem!

Bailan las gitanas (The Gypsies Dance)
The Gypsies Dance
The gypsies dance,
the King watches them;
the Queen, jealous,
orders their arrest.

For Twelfth Night
Belica and Inés
performed for the King
a gypsy dance.
Clumsy Belica
fell beside the King,
and the King lifted her up
being purely courteous;
more as if she's Belilla
having such a pretty face,
the Queen, jealous,
orders their arrest.

Las tres hojas (The Three Leaves)

Under the leaf
Of the verbena
I have my evil lover.
Jesus, what pain!

Under the leaf
Of the lettuce
I have my evil lover.
What heat!

Under the leaf
Of the parsley
I have my evil lover.
There’s no escape!