Poetry is a life-cherishing force.  For poems are not words, after all, but fires for the cold, ropes let down for the lost, something as necessary as bread in the pockets of the hungry. – Rodger Housden – 10 Poems to Open Your Heart.

Welcome to Part II of 10 Poems for Encouragement and Inspiration. In the first part we shared the following inspirational and uplifting poems by various poets from different time and places. This included video and audio to enhance the experience via listening.

These first five poems of encouragement where:-

Part I

  1. A Road Less Travelled By – Robert Frost
  2. A Man Stood Up – Rainer Maria Rilke
  3. The Holy Longing – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
  4. That Sweet Moon Language – Hafiz
  5. The Song of Wandering Aengus – W. B. Yeats

Inspirational Poems of Encouragement

I choose to divide these 10 poems of encouragement into two parts so that you might enjoy too bites of the cherry rather than one. Below are shared the remaining five poems of inspiration and encouragement. These include video and audio that I hope enhances the listening experience.

The five poems that conclude this two part invitation to Companioning YOUR Greatness are:-

Part II

  1. Love after Love – Derek Walcott
  2. The Alchemist – Rumi
  3. Pegasus – Patrick Kavanagh
  4. West Wind II – Mary Oliver
  5. The Bright Field – R. S Thomas

Poems of Encouragement – Part II

Love After Love  – Derek Walcott

This is a poem that shares with you the invitation to “feast on your life.” This will be your experience when you meet again the One who has loved you all your life. This is the One that is not separate from you – ever has been separate from you – ever will be separate from you.

The quest of being human is to know this directly and not something to believe in. A mere belief is the practice of building you house on the shifting sands of time. This is not the rock of KNOWING beyond the limitation of the intellect and the identification with the personal.

Love After Love

The time will come
when, with elation
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,

and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.

Derek Wallcott

The Alchemy of Love – Rumi

The Alchemist is the one who has learned to turn lead into gold. You are the one who, on the journey of spiritual growth awaken the Alchemist within. This is the Presence within you, the Secret of Secrets that knows how to transform the lead of the separate self into the Gold of the true Self.

This is not something you do. It is that you allow it to be done to you. It is the letting go into the experience of real faith. Faith is the willingness to go into the unknown. Those who have been alchemised will encouraged to take this leap of faith where you will meet again the stranger who has loved you all your life.

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I Accept

The Alchemy of Love

You come to us
from another world

From beyond the stars
and void of space.
Transcendent, Pure,
Of unimaginable beauty,
Bringing with you
the essence of love

You transform all
who are touched by you.
Mundane concerns,
troubles, and sorrows
dissolve in your presence,
Bringing joy
to ruler and ruled
To peasant and king

You bewilder us
with your grace.
All evils
transform into

You are the master alchemist.

You light the fire of love
in earth and sky
in heart and soul
of every being.

Through your love
existence and nonexistence merge.
All opposites unite.
All that is profane
becomes sacred again.”

― Rumi

Pegasus – Patrick Kavanagh

Here is my favourite poem by the Irish poem Patrick Kavanagh. This is where you are invited to allow your soul to take wing. This poem shares the journey of the first stage of life where you are required to explore success and failure within the world of time.

In the second half of life you realize (I hope you realize) that you need to be free to be true to who you are created to become.

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I Accept

by Patrick Kavanagh

My soul was an old horse
Offered for sale in twenty fairs.
I offered him to the Church–the buyers
Were little men who feared his unusual airs.
One said: ‘Let him remain unbid
In the wind and rain and hunger
Of sin and we will get him–
With the winkers thrown in–for nothing.’

Then the men of State looked at
What I’d brought for sale.
One minister, wondering if
Another horse-body would fit the tail
That he’d kept for sentiment-
The relic of his own soul–
Said, ‘I will graze him in lieu of his labour.’
I lent him for a week or more
And he came back a hurdle of bones,
Starved, overworked, in despair.
I nursed him on the roadside grass
To shape him for another fair.

I lowered my price. I stood him where
The broken-winded, spavined stand
And crooked shopkeepers said that he
Might do a season on the land–
But not for high-paid work in towns.
He’d do a tinker, possibly.
I begged, ‘O make some offer now,
A soul is a poor man’s tragedy.
He’ll draw your dungiest cart,’ I said,
‘Show you short cuts to Mass,
Teach weather lore, at night collect
Bad debts from poor men’s grass.’
And they would not.

Where the
Tinkers quarrel I went down
With my horse, my soul.
I cried, ‘Who will bid me half a crown?’
From their rowdy bargaining
Not one turned. ‘Soul,’ I prayed,
‘I have hawked you through the world
Of Church and State and meanest trade.
But this evening, halter off,
Never again will it go on.
On the south side of ditches
There is grazing of the sun.
No more haggling with the world….’

As I said these words he grew
Wings upon his back. Now I may ride him
Every land my imagination knew.

West Wind II – Mary Oliver

No top ten selection of poems inviting you to Companion YOUR Greatness could ever be complete without including a poem from the modern mystic poet Mary Oliver. Here is a poem that reminds us, once again of the importance of Love.

West Wind II

You are young. So you know everything. You leap
into the boat and begin rowing. But listen to me.
Without fanfare, without embarrassment, without
any doubt, I talk directly to your soul. Listen to me.
Lift the oars from the water, let your arms rest, and
your heart, and heart’s little intelligence, and listen to
me. There is life without love. It is not worth a bent
penny, or a scuffed shoe. It is not worth the body of a
dead dog nine days unburied. When you hear, a mile
away and still out of sight, the churn of the water
as it begins to swirl and roil, fretting around the
sharp rocks – when you hear that unmistakable
pounding – when you feel the mist on your mouth
and sense ahead the embattlement, the long falls
plunging and steaming – then row, row for your life
toward it.

~ Mary Oliver ~

The Bright Field – R. S. Thomas

Here is the quintessential poem about the experience of spiritual awakening and what one must do in order to allow it to be re-experienced. It is to be able to give up who you think you are in order to allow the Secret of Secrets to be inside you again.

The poet speaks of possession this field of grace but it is more that you learn to allow this Field of Infinite Presence to possess you which it always does. It is being possessed by the Timelessness of Love.

The Bright Field
R. S. Thomas

I have seen the sun break through
to illuminate a small field
for a while, and gone my way
and forgotten it. But that was the
pearl of great price, the one field that had
treasure in it. I realise now
that I must give all that I have
to possess it. Life is not hurrying

on to a receding future, nor hankering after
an imagined past. It is the turning
aside like Moses to the miracle
of the lit bush, to a brightness
that seemed as transitory as your youth

The End of The Journey (Or is it?)

This is end of Part II of a two part article on inspirational poems of encouragement for the Spiritual Journey. The second part follows shortly (after 19th March 2019)

These poems come from different times, cultures and traditions. They are all inviting you into an experience that is changeless and eternal. This is the KNOWING of the true Self.

Most people take the Road More Travelled by which is the identification with the time bound false self – the mask – the persona.

This is the major reason for most of the unnecessary suffering in the world. I hope these deep heart’s core invitations invite you to explore your becoming a true Companion of Greatness.

Why not make reading or listening to sacred poetry part of the way in which you begin your day? This will change your energy because you are connecting with an energy that invites the highest good to come through you. In this way you companion greatness.

It is after all who and why you are.

Part I of Inspirational Poems of Encouragement

For more inspirational poems of encouragement you may like to read the first five poems at the link below:-

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These poems are:-

  1. A Road Less Travelled By – Robert Frost
  2. A Man Stood Up – Rainer Maria Rilke
  3. The Holy Longing – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
  4. That Sweet Moon Language – Hafiz
  5. The Song of Wandering Aengus – W. B. Yeats


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