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Dreaming of Stones, Poems


By Christine Valters Paintner

The poems in Dreaming of Stones are about what endures: hope and desire, changing seasons, wild places, love, and the wisdom of mystics. Inspired by the poet’s time living in Ireland these readings invite you into deeper ways of seeing the world. They have an incantational quality. Drawing on her commitment as a Benedictine oblate, the poems arise out of a practice of sitting in silence and lectio divina, in which life becomes the holy text.
No stranger to poetry, Paintner’s bestselling spirituality titles have often included poems. In this first exclusively poetic collection, she writes with a contemplative heart about kinship with nature, ancestral connections, intimacy, the landscape, the unfolding nature of time, and Christian mystics. It can be read for reflection to spark the heart and to offer solace and inspiration in difficult times. 

in is a miracle,
this breathing out, release,
this breathing in a welcome to
the unseen gifts which sustain me each
moment, this breathing out a sweet sigh,
a bow to my mortality, this breathing in
a holy yes to life, this breathing out
a sacred no to all that causes
me to clench and grasp,
this breathing in is a
revelation, this
breathing out,
Author, Christine Valters Paintner, PhD, REACE is the online Abbess of AbbeyoftheArts, a virtual monastery and global, ecumenical community integrating contemplative practice and creative expression. She is a Benedictine oblate living on the west coast of Ireland with her husband John. Together they lead pilgrimages and retreats in Ireland, Scotland, Germany, and Austria. Christine is the author of twelve books on spirituality, monastic wisdom, creativity, and the arts including The Artist’s Rule and The Soul’s Slow Ripening.  Her poems have been published in journals in the U.S., Canada, Ireland, and the UK.
Paperback, 2019
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